The Romanian Government should ask the European Union for a 30-year loan of 1 billion euros without interest to double the capacity of Constanța seaport, to become the new Black Sea gateway of the Eastern Europe.
Containers that wait for days to be unloaded, in the suffocating bustle of Constanța seaport, are generating increasing costs for economic operators, alongside with delivery delays and higher prices calculated for the final customers.
"At the present moment, the situation is a tense one, as an agglomeration like this, I haven’t seen in the last 15-20 years. The first reason is the war in Ukraine. Unfortunately, this agglomeration is not due to any spectacular increase in the GDP or any other major investment in Romania, which would generate massive exports", says Lucrețiu Cerveni, operational manager at Container Filler, a company that provides cargo container loading and unloading services in Constanța seaport.
The need of investments for developing the seaport and other means of transport is registered in the context that the leaders of The Group of Seven (G7) already committed on Sunday to raise 600 billion dollars over five years, in public and private funds, to finance the infrastructure required in developing countries and to counteract the China's Belt and Road project, according to Reuters.
Of the 600 billion euros, at least 1 billion euros should be directed for developing the infrastructure of Constanța seaport, so that it becomes the new gateway to the Black Sea for the Eastern Europe.
The situation in the port got even worsened, as a result of the war in Ukraine, because the Constanța seaport had to take over the ships that would have arrived in the ports of the Republic of Moldova or Ukraine. A large part of the blockages that now exist in the port of Constanța are caused by the grain deliveries.
Since Ukraine has only the ports of Reni and Izmail functional due to the war, the cargo loaded in these ports is further carried through the ports of Romania and Poland, so there are large quantities of wheat and other grains in Constanța port waiting to be carried further to other destinations, in addition to the grains also stored by the Romanian farmers who do not have their own warehouse and use the storing capacities owned by the foreign traders.
"Constanța seaport should be considered a base component with a determining role in generating cargo flows and logistic chains. However, the port itself represents only a part of the problem. The external transport infrastructure of the port – meaning the road, rail and inland waterways – represents another category of the problem", says Niculae Dușu, one of the entrepreneurs who manage Socep Constanța, a port operator which owns one of the two container terminals, in addition to Constanta South Container Terminal, owned by Dubai's DP World, which did not respond to ZF's request.
The grain basin of Ukraine is located near the area of Constanța seaport at the Black Sea, and not to the Baltic Sea, located further north. But cereals are not the only goods transiting the port of Constanța, although they represent the largest share. The port is also used for ores, refined or crude oil products, chemical fertilizers and fertilizers, metallurgical products, food products, consumer goods, timber, equipment and motor vehicles and many others.