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Italy intends to present plan to unlock Ukrainian exports late April at conference in Rome

LJUBLJANA. March 6 (Interfax-Ukraine) – One of the first projects that Italy will present at the conference on the reconstruction of Ukraine, which is scheduled for late April in Rome, will be the creation of input and output terminals for the Ukrainian economy in the north-east of Italy, Italian Minister of Economic Development Adolfo Urso recently said at a roundtable of the Italian Confederation of Trade Unions (Cisl Venezia) in Venice.

“Essentially, the Black Sea is closed (to Ukraine) due to hostilities. In this case (to unlock Ukrainian exports), there is no other option but to deliver goods to the Adriatic using existing railways and highways,” Urso quoted by the Italian media.

The plan for unblocking Ukrainian exports, including metallurgical products, developed by the Italian government, provides for the creation of an intermodal transport highway along the route of the International Transport Corridor No. 5 (Venice – Trieste/Koper – Ljubljana – Maribor – Budapest – Uzhgorod – Lviv – Kyiv).

For this purpose, the Italian government intends to create a logistics platform that will connect Ukraine by land with the Verona Quadrante Europa intermodal port and further with the seaports of northeast Italy, in particular with Trieste and Venice.

“Thus, we will provide Kyiv with a new and safe access to the sea, given the difficulties in using Ukrainian ports on the Black Sea,” the minister said.

He expressed hope that the logistics corridor between the Verona Quadrante Europa intermodal port and the Goronda logistics site in Zakarpattia region of Ukraine on the border with Slovakia will be ready by the time the conference starts in Rome at the end of April 2023.

“The corridor will already be active before this date (the start of the conference in Rome). Italy is the leader of the project, which involves several countries,” he said, adding that at the Italy-Ukraine logistics corridor project will be presented on March 10 during the logistics fair in Verona.

Verona Quadrante Europa is the largest transport hub in Italy, located at the intersection of the motorways Turin – Trieste and Modena – Innsbruck (Austria), as well as at the intersection of the Verona-Innsbruck and Milan-Venice railway lines.

Ukrainian ports on the Black Sea have been closed since March 2022 due to mine danger and military threat from the Russian Black Sea Fleet. Currently, only the ports on the Danube, as well as the ports of Odesa, Pivdenny and Chornomorsk continue operating in the country as part of the Grain Initiative.