Chinese billionaire reignites interest in Crimean Port Project


Chinese billionaire Wang Jing, the man behind the proposed Nicaragua Canal,  has reignited plans to invest US$10 billion into the Crimean Port Project.

A memorandum had been signed between Wang Jing’s Beijing Interoceanic Canal Investment Management Company (BICIM) and its Ukrainian partner, Kievgidroinvest, during the presidency of Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych.

However the plans were halted by the Ukrainian political crisis.

With Crimea back under the control of the Russian Federation, Ria Novosti reported that after Russian President Vladamir Putin travelled to China, the project is set to resume in August.

“We are planning to launch the project as soon as steps on (the) introduction of the ruble and supplying the peninsula with public water are finalised,” Crimea’s Deputy Prime Minister Rustam Temirgaliev told Russian newspaper Izvesta.

The first stage of the proposed project is a $3 billion 25-metre deep port to the south of Yevpatoria on Crimea’s western coast, complete with grain and freight terminals with an annual capacity of 200 million tonnes.

According to The Moscow Times, the second stage of the mammoth project will see the construction of an airport, a liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal and a shipyard, at a total cost of around $7 billion.

Russia’s eagerness for the project to go ahead has resulted in the scrapping of plans to build a port in Taman so that funds can be redirected to aid development in Crimea.

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