Port of South Louisiana signs memorandum of understanding with Ukraine Sea Ports Authority

Published 9:50 am Saturday, September 2, 2023

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RESERVE — This week, the Port of South Louisiana (PortSL) and Ukraine Sea Ports Authority (USPA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), launching a cooperative alliance directed at technical guidance toward planning, development, construction, administration, and operation and maintenance of port infrastructure, particularly when reconstruction begins in Ukraine. This non-binding agreement was signed by PortSL CEO Paul Matthews and USPA-head Yurii Lytvyn (not in attendance) and witnessed by Ukraine Consul General Vitalii Tarasiuk, Consul for Economic Issues Pavlo Moiseischenko, PortSL Commissioners Katie Klibert, D. Paul Robichaux, and Joey Murray, and PortSL staff.

“As two of the world’s leading grain exporters, the farmers and workers of the United States and Ukraine are tough and take pride in their role in feeding the world,” said Paul Matthews, CEO of PortSL. “This agreement solidifies Port of South Louisiana’s support for the Ukrainian people in the defense of their freedom and creates an alliance with our Ukrainian port partners that focuses on our shared mission of serving global customers and creating economic prosperity for our communities.”

Featuring heavily in our respective economies is agriculture. The United States is the world’s top corn producer, exporting 69.8M tons of corn according to the U.S. Grains Council. Moreover, the U.S. is the fifth global wheat producer, exporting more than 26M tons. Ukraine, on the other hand, produces 10% and 14% of wheat and corn exports worldwide, respectively, making the country the fourth and fifth largest exporter wheat and corn.

Over 60% of the United States’ grain passes through the Port of South Louisiana, with exports of more than 48M tons annually. The Port of Odesa is the largest Ukrainian sea port with a total annual traffic capacity of 40M tons (15M dry bulk and 25M liquid bulk). Although it is a multifunctional port dealing with a variety of commodities, it is known as a major gain export facility in the Mediterranean region. It also has the biggest oil and gas terminal of Ukraine.