FORWARDERS involved in the oil and gas sector and shipments of so-called "dual-use" equipment are expected to be affected by the latest round of EU and US sanctions against Russia.
But they believe measures introduced against Crimea's two leading commercial ports, Sevastopol and Kerch, and state-owned ferry company Kerch Ferry, are likely to have a minimal effect, reports Lloyd's Loading List.
Said a Panalpina spokesman: "The biggest impact on our international cargo flows will certainly come from the new sanctions on specialised equipment for the oil and gas industry and on dual-use equipment."
He said that Sevastopol and Kerch were relatively unimportant in the overall sea freight market.
"The most important Ukrainian ports for us for ocean freight are Odessa and Illichevsk. We have had no activities at the ports of Sevastopol and Kerch. These two only account for 5-10 per cent of Ukrainian ocean freight."
"Panalpina's two offices in Kiev and at the city's airport are in operation as are the main (Ukrainian) seaports Odessa and Illichevsk," said Panalpina.
"But logistics activities are restricted or not possible in the Donbas region and in the Crimea. There are no flights to Donetsk and Lugansk as well as to Sevastopol and other Crimean airports," he said.
Hans-Werner Sinn, a German economist and president of the Ifo Institute for Economic Research, estimated that only three per cent of Germany's exports went to Russia.
Mr Sinn said that a survey of German companies showed that almost half did business with Russia and a fifth had been affected by the deteriorating relationship between Russia and the EU.
He told Bloomberg that the uncertainty caused by the worsening relations meant that many EU companies were deferring decisions relating to investments in Russia.
The addition of Sevastopol and Kerch brings the number of persons and entities under EU restrictions to 95 persons and 23 entities, according to a statement from the Council of the EU.
Meanwhile, Russia has extended its import ban to most food products from the EU and US, along with several other countries including Australia, Canada and Norway in retaliation against the latest round of sanctions,
Russia also considering banning overflights by EU and US airlines after confirming that Ukrainian airlines will be barred from transit across its territory.
Source : HKSG.