The Mineral Fertilisers 2017 conference, organized by CREON Chemicals, was held in Moscow on October 14.

The Mineral Fertilisers 2017 conference, organized by CREON Chemicals, was held in Moscow on October 14.

Olga Gopkalo, Leading Specialist at Morstroytechnology, gave a presentation at the conference on port infrastructure development for mineral fertilizer handling. Currently, the situation is fairly challenging, although in spite of the relatively depressed state of the fertilizer market in recent years, analysts, economists and industry experts are of the opinion that demand for mineral fertilizers in the long-term can only increase. That at least is the picture if one takes a view over 10, 15, 20 years or more.

Creating transport infrastructure also takes time, and once built, infrastructure as a rule will take decades to recoup the investment, so it is entirely logical to start thinking now about whether the growth in Russia’s mineral fertilizer production will be served by the port and terminal infrastructure going forward.

If we look at port statistics over the past 10 years, we can see that the volume of Russian fertilizer handled by ports in Russia, the Baltic and Ukraine has increased by 11%. However, the increase in the Baltic ports alone has been higher still – almost half again as much as 10 years ago (45%).

And yet this is happening against the backdrop of a clearly stated Russian government policy to bring Russian goods back to Russian ports.

The reasons behind this were examined during the presentation, excerpts from which will be published in the December issue of RZD-Partner magazine.