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Friday, April 9, 2021
ATB supermarket chain plans to invest $410 million in its expansion in the Ukrainian market this year,

said Boris Markov, ATB General Director, in a company press release. Claiming to be Ukraine’s fastest growing supermarket chain, ATB said that it invested $370 million in its expansion during 2020, opening 127 new stores. Its retail network extends to all 24 regions of Ukraine, and ATB has a total of 1,216 stores in 313 towns and cities. The company has estimated that 4 million Ukrainians – more than 10% of Ukraine’s adults population – shop at ATB.

Friday, April 9, 2021
Poland’s BGK Bank has agreed to fund 60% of the first phase of Lviv’s Innovation District IT Park,

the technology park has reported. The State-owned Bank, Gospodarstwa Krajowego, will loan €81.5 million for the €136 million first phase of development. With a first phase expected to be completed by of end 2023, the general contractor will be Unibep, one of Poland’s largest construction companies. Spreading over a 10-hectare site which is located 4 km south of Rynok Square, the Park will feature research laboratories and offices for 10,000 IT workers and students. Companies that have already reserved space include: GlobalLogic, N-iX, Intellias, SoftServe and Perfectial.

Friday, April 9, 2021
In Lviv, the continuing investment in property development includes the construction of a business and city administrative center on a prime 7-hectare lot which had previously been a military base,

 the Lviv City Council has announced. The triangular lot which is located 1.7 kilometerss west of Rynok Square, is to become a mixed use area.  The project will include a park, a business center, a congress hall and a new administrative building for the City Council, (Interfax-Ukraine).  On the site, bounded by Horodotska, Taras Shevchenko and Yaroslav Mudry streets, City Architect Anton Kolomiytsev has proposed to repurpose the site’s historic, Hapsburg-era buildings to new uses.

Friday, April 9, 2021
While shopping malls close in the US, they have a future in Ukraine, said

 Sergiy Sergiyenko, Managing Partner of CBRE Ukraine, (Kyiv Post). “Living in Kyiv and Ukraine, in general, there are no quality public spaces in winter…So, people go out and go to a mall,” he said adding that in Kyiv residents travel to malls using mass transit. “Malls are places for hanging out, for window-shopping or for trying on clothes. They may not be so profitable, but they still continue to be used…Rental rates in shopping malls did get hammered, but they will recover gradually.”

Friday, April 9, 2021
During the pandemic year, online shopping increased by 26% and shopping mall rents softened. Despite these conditions 20 new malls are expected to open across Ukraine by the end of next year.

This will add a total of 1.8 million square meters of leasable area, reported the Kyiv Post. This year, Kyiv is to see the openings of Ocean Mall with 100,000 square meters and Blockbuster Phase 3, with 55,000 square meters. Next year, if construction plans hold up, five new malls are to open in Kyiv, adding 173,000 square meters of retail space.

Friday, April 9, 2021
The e-commerce boom pushed Kyiv warehouse vacancy rates down from 30% to 2%, according to a new report

 by Cushman & Wakefield, the real estate consultancy. Although 85,000 square meters of new space were commissioned last year, rates have increased to $5.5 per square meter. “It is not enough to satisfy existing occupier demand,” said the report. This year, an additional 60,000 square meters are pipeline for 2021.

Friday, April 9, 2021
Retailers from neighboring Poland and Turkey aggressively court Ukrainian consumers

, introducing their brands and opening stores, said Konstantin Oliynyk, UTG (Interfax-Ukraine). Brands from Poland include:  LPP, Sinsay, CROPP, House, MOHITO, Reserved. Turkish retail brands include: DeFacto, LC Waikiki, and FLO.

Friday, April 9, 2021
Remote working will cause a 25% shrinkage of Kyiv’s ‘office footprint’ by 2024, predicted

 Sergiyenko of CBRE, (Kyiv Post). “In other words, if there are 2 million square meters in total supply — 400,000 to 500,000 square meters will be vacated,” he says. However, he cautions:Offices are not going away. They are places for ideas, collaboration, socializing. A company is a social entity.”

Friday, April 9, 2021
Kyiv’s office vacancy rate doubled last year, to 11%,

the highest level since 2014. In turn, rents fell by 10 to 20%, reported the Kyiv Post. Faced with uncertainty in the pandemic year, CBRE Ukraine said that developers offered only 125,000 square meters of new office space — half the initial plan. This year, Cushman & Wakefield has predicted that 160,000 square meters in new office space will come on the market in Kyiv. Total current supply is 2 million square meters.

Friday, April 9, 2021
Rents are softening during the April lockdown, with discounts up to 30% expected,

said Yuri Pita, President of the Association of Realtors of Ukraine, (Interfax-Ukraine). Assuming the coronavirus pandemic ebbs in May, rents will stabilize. However, he adds: “In the face of accelerating inflation, the cost of rent can increase by an average of 5-7%.”

Friday, April 9, 2021
Ukraine’s real estate magnates were recently ranked by Forbes Ukraine. The top eight are:
  1. Viktor Polishchuk, owner of Gulliver and the Eldorado retail chain. $70 million
  2. Vagif Aliyev, developer of Blockbuster Mall, Lavina Mall, and Mandarin Plaza. $61 million
  3. Tomas Fiala, founder/CEO of Dragon Capital, which owns six shopping centers, 10 warehouse complexes and 13 office buildings. $54 million
  4. Alexander Yaroslavsky, owner of Caravan shopping mall chain and Kharkiv Palace Hotel. $46 million
  5. Adnan Kivan, owner Kadorr Group. $45 million.
  6. Roman Lunin, Equator shopping malls. $35 million
  7. Rinat Akhmetov, TSUM, Leonardo Business Center, Opera Hotel, Ukrtelecom real estate. $32 million.
  8. Garik Korogodsky and Oleksandr Melamud, owners Dream Town malls. $32 million
Friday, April 9, 2021
With the EU closed to Ukrainian tourists, local beach and rural retreat hotels may enjoy another boom this summer.

Vodafone has reported that analytics of cell phone users showed a 30% yoy increase last summer at Ukrainian beach resorts. On the Azov, one hamlet, Bilosarayska Kosa, about 20 kilometers west of Mariupol, saw a 177% yoy increase. Last summer, while Kyiv hotels saw occupancy rates fall to 23%, seven countryside hotels reported revenue increases, reports the Ukrainian Hotel and Resort Association. More recently, during the December-January holidays, Carpathian mountain resort hotels enjoyed almost 100% occupancies, Artur Lupashko, founder of Ribas Hotels Group, told Interfax-Ukraine.

Friday, April 9, 2021

Editor’s Note: Russia’s Sept. 19 Duma elections seem to be driving President Putin to massively build up military forces on Ukraine’s eastern border. With Russia’s economy and political situation stagnant for years, Putin may be tempted to stage a ‘glorious’ little summer war as an electoral diversion. But, in terms of lives lost and Western sanctions imposed, a small war could well prove inglorious. My bet is that Putin will try a Crimea II: the largely bloodless annexation of the half of the Donbas he already controls, ‘endorsed’ by a late summer referendum. To pave the way, by Jan. 1, he had handed out Russian passports to 441,000 residents of Russia-controlled Donetsk and Luhansk. Then, on Jan. 28, Margarita Simonyan, head of RT, traveled to Donetsk and made an emotional appeal to wild applause:“Mother Russia, take Donbas home!”  Ominously, the Kremlin never shot down that trial balloon. With Best Regards Jim Brooke

Thursday, April 8, 2021
Dnipro River shipping traffic in the first quarter increased by 66%,

over the first quarter of 2020, reported the Sea Ports Administration. Of the 1.8 million tons, the cargoes were: construction materials +79% to 1 million tons; grain + 33% to 587,000 tons; and metals +280% to 171,000 tons. The winter season is characterized by short haul barge trips. On March 10, the full river opened to shipping, with all locks working between Nova Kakhovka and the Kyiv Sea.

Thursday, April 8, 2021
Shipping cargo from the Persian Gulf to Kyiv is this summer’s schedule for Kherson’s Argo Shipping

, reported the Agrologistics website. With a fleet of nine sea-river ships, Argo already takes cargo from Zaporizhia to Greece, Italy and France. Last summer, its vessel MV Porada carried 2,000 tons of Turkish cement to Ukrainka, a Dnipro port 40 km downriver from Kyiv. Last year Argo carried 710,000 tons of cargo on the Dnipro, a 30% increase over 2019 volumes. Argo Commercial Director, Alexander Nikulin said: “This year, we have already received requests from charterers to operate cargo trips from the Persian Gulf countries to Kyiv.”

Thursday, April 8, 2021
The state-owned Ukrainian Danube Shipping Company is pursuing a $200 million ship investment program that would allow it to increase its capacity to carry 4 million tons of cargo on the Dnipro

, a 40% increase over the river’s 2019 cargo level. In a first step, the parent agency, the Infrastructure Ministry, has endorsed the Danube Shipping’s plan to build 16 tugs and 31 barges for use on the Dnipro. The Ministry also promised to transfer to the company its river ports and terminals. Danube Shipping is in negotiations with the EBRD and other international financial institutions to secure low interest financing. By replacing trucks on the highways, river transportation bonds and loans often are considered ‘green.’

Thursday, April 8, 2021
Nibulon, the largest private shipper on Ukraine’s rivers, has launched its sixth NBL-91, or low draft barge.

Drawing only four meters, the barge can carry down the Southern Bug loads of grain up to 3,000 tons. With six of these barges, Nibulon’s river fleet now numbers 85 vessels, most of them produced at the company’s shipyard in Mykolaiv.

Thursday, April 8, 2021
The company is building five river-sea patrol boats under contract with France’s OCEA,

said the French Ambassador to Ukraine, Etienne de Poncins. The first of the aluminum, high speed boats is to be delivered by the end of 2021. The Nibulon contract is part of a 20-boat, €136 million deal that is 85% financed by the French Treasury and Bpifrance, the state-owned investment bank.

Thursday, April 8, 2021
SMG’s Kherson shipyard is modernizing four dry cargo vessels for EemsWerken NV of the Netherlands.

Last year, Smart Maritime Group, which unites Kherson and Mykolaiv shipyards, built hulls for two Dutch chemical tankers and modernized and repaired 55 vessels.

Thursday, April 8, 2021
This summer, the Rada is to approve creating a fund to pay for the government’s multi-billion dollar plan to renovate the Dnipro locks — and to triple river cargo,

to 30 million tons a year, Infrastructure Minister Krikliy said at a recent meeting the European Business Association. The State Fund for Inland Waterways is modeled on the three-year-old Ukrainian State Road Fund, which draws on user fees to guarantee money for road repair and construction.

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