Russia Signs Marine Terminal Agreement with MSC Cruises

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By Shubin Aleksey Andreyevich

While at the XIII International Investment Forum in Sochi last Friday, Nikolay Tsukanov, Governor of Kaliningrad region, Andrei Tarasenko, CEO of Rosmorport and MSC Cruises CEO Roberto Grandi Navi Veloci Mortinoli signed an agreement to build an international marine terminal to receive cruise and cargo ships at the port of Pioneer along the Baltic Sea in Russia’s Kaliningrad region.

Kaliningrad is a Russian enclave located on the Baltic Sea between Poland and Lithuania and geographically isolated from the rest of Russia.

Regional authorities expect that in 2015 it will be possible to start work on the new terminal with the total volume of investment reaching upwards of $240 million including the construction of engineering networks, communications, and roads. The rest of the work being done under the federal target program, “Development of transport system of Russia 2010-2020.”

The plans for the construction of the passenger port in the Pionersky became known in early 2013 and thereafter lengthy negotiations were conducted with potential investors. Deputy Prime Minister of the regional Kaliningrad government Alexander Rolbinov reported that “under the most optimistic scenario” passenger terminal for marine ships can be built by 2016.

MSC’s Mortinoli cited the unique geographical position in the Baltic Sea as key to integration with his company’s cruise networks in the Baltic. “We see the interest and support of the government of the region, and we believe in the success of the project,” says Mortinoli.

“This project is one more step towards the development of tourism infrastructure of our region,” added Tsukanov.