Russia’s non-freezing Vitino port in Murmansk Region could resume handling cargo after stopping operations in 2014.
The port was bought by the Kazakhstan businessman Kenes Rakichev via BTA Bank. The new owner intends to resume operations in Q1 2020. Neither projected volumes, nor cargo origin or destination are so far disclosed.
However, the company has informed the West Arctic Ports Administration on its plans to resume handling liquid bulk in Vitino. This year, repair works should start in Vitino to prepare the port for a restart. Preparation for obtaining all the licenses required for resuming operations are underway.
According to K.Rakishev, negotiations are held with Gunvor on strategic partnership in the port project. The sum of investment in the project is not disclosed.
Vitino used to handle export designated oil and products delivered to the port by rail. The port has rail connections with Murmansk and St. Petersburg. In 2005, Novatek completed modernization of VItino, but after the company switched its gas condensate export to its own terminal in Ust-Luga cargo traffic via Vitino kept declining until it became insufficient for shippers to maintain exports via the port.