As of July 29, Ukraine can freely fly on vacation to the following six countries: Bulgaria, Turkey, Egypt, Albania, Montenegro and Croatia, Minister of Infrastructure Vladyslav Krykliy said on his Telegram channel on Wednesday.
He said that it is possible to get to Bulgaria only if there is a negative test for coronavirus (COVID-19) disease, made within 72 hours before arrival. In order to get to Croatia the travelers have to show mandatory negative PCR test at entry, made within the last 48 hours. He said that after visiting Montenegro, a 14-day self-isolation upon arrival in Ukraine is required.
According to the minister, entry and return to Turkey, Egypt and Albania are without restrictions.
Krykliy also said that a PCR test can be done before departure, right at the airport, namely, at Boryspil, Lviv and Odesa airports, as the PCR laboratories have been installed for quick testing.
“The data on entry changes every day depending on the epidemiological situation in the countries. Therefore, be sure to check the information before traveling,” he also said
Egypt expects an increase in the flow of tourists from Ukraine in the autumn and expects by the end of 2020 to “catch up” with the indicators of 2019, when the country was visited by more than 1.7 million tourists from Ukraine, Managing Director of ODEON Tours, the host of Coral Travel in Egypt, Abdallah Tarek has said.
“We expect that after the end of the crisis, which lasted three or four months, the number of Ukrainian tourists in Egypt will be the same as last year. Namely, 1.7 million tourists from Ukraine. Given that the season in Egypt begins in winter period, we are now in a low summer season and expect growth in the autumn,” he said.
According to him, this year Egyptian hotels have kept prices at the level of the previous year.
To encourage tourists, the Egyptian government has canceled tourist visa fees for Ukrainians until October 31, 2020. In addition, if Ukrainian tourists have contracted with coronavirus COVID-19, all costs associated with the disease will be fully covered by state-suspended insurance.
At the same time, according to Tarek, the guest will be accommodated free of charge in an isolated room or hospital until complete recovery. And if Egypt enters the “red zone” again, the tour operator Coral Travel will provide its guests with free testing upon their return to Ukraine.
“I can say with confidence that it is now very safe to come to Sharm el-Sheikh and Hurghada. Each beach hotel has one isolated floor or a separate building in which each infected guest will be isolated with the support and accompaniment of the Ministry of Health, as well as the hotel itself and tour operator Coral Travel,” the managing director of ODEON Tours said.
He also said that as part of measures to counter the spread of COVID-19, the tour operator has created a new application, Coral App, which will contain all relevant information about the tour, aircraft schedule or transfer. Also, all printed materials have been removed, now the information is available in the application.
According to the requirements of the Egyptian government, only hotels that have received the Hygiene Safety Certificate are eligible to receive guests. To ensure that all standards and protocols are adhered to, each hotel has a dedicated health and safety manager and hotel occupancy rates must not exceed 50%.
“We adhere to all the rules introduced by our government, in particular, 50% occupancy during transfers, the obligation of guests to wear masks and disinfect their hands before getting on the bus. All guides undergo mandatory training on how to act, how to protect guests from the threat of the spread of COVID-19, study their responsibilities, including drivers,” Tarek said.
Among the hotels that have received the necessary state certificate and have already opened for guests are five-star Otium Family Amphoras Beach Resort, which is part of the OTI Hotels & Resorts International network, and Rixos Premium Seagate (both in Sharm el-Sheikh).
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky had a phone conversation with President of Egypt Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi, during which they highly appreciated the trade and economic cooperation between the countries, discussed further steps to develop mutually beneficial cooperation, the press service of the President’s Office said.
“The President of Ukraine expressed interest in further strengthening trade and economic cooperation with Egypt, our country’s largest trading partner on the African continent and in the Middle East. Zelensky noted the contribution of Ukrainian companies to ensuring food security in Egypt, and stressed the importance of successful implementation of projects of Ukrainian enterprises in this country,” the message reads.
In addition, the topic of strengthening cooperation in the space industry was separately discussed.
“Given the considerable experience and the available industrial and engineering base, Ukraine is interested in resuming mutually beneficial cooperation with Egypt in such areas as satellite production and management, modernization of ground-based flight control base and equipment for testing spacecraft, training and education of Egyptian specialists. I am convinced that our states have a significant potential for cooperation in the use of outer space for peaceful purposes,” the President of Ukraine said.
The presidents also exchanged invitations on visiting the two countries after the stabilization of the situation with the coronavirus.
OTI Holding, which includes the Ukrainian tour operator Coral Travel, intends to create the OTI Hotels & Resorts International hotel chain as part of the reorganization of the hotel business. Director of Coral Travel Tetiana Prokopenko told Interfax-Ukraine that by the beginning of the summer season 2020, the network will include more than 20 hotels, and by the end of the year it will expand to 30 hotels in the resorts of Turkey, Egypt and Tunisia.
According to Prokopenko, the network will be developed via renting or buying hotels, taking them into management, and also through franchising – work under an agreement on holding standards related to service, staff training, guest relations, food, drinks, branding, active leisure, sports, animation, children’s events and sanitary standards.
OTI Hotels & Resorts International will include hotels of various levels. They will operate under the new Seven Seas Resorts & Hotels brand, as well as under the well-established brands Otium Hotels and Xanadu Resort.
In addition, Coral Travel plans to expand the flight program from Kyiv and the regions in the 2020 season, as well as increase its own product list in the most popular directions – Turkey, Egypt, Greece and Spain.
The tour operator also plans the further development of its own two franchise networks, Coral Travel travel agency and Coral Elite Service travel agency. By the end of 2020, the latter would have 350 offices in 90 cities of Ukraine.
Ukraine in January-May 2019 increased exports of titanium containing ore and concentrate in kind by 6.1% compared to January-May 2018, to 257,369 tonnes. According to customs statistics released by the State Fiscal Service, over the period exports of titanium ore and concentrate in monetary terms increased by 23.5%, to $62.121 million.
Major exports were made to Egypt (19.94% of deliveries in monetary terms), Mexico (16.52%), and the Czech Republic (14.72%).
Ukraine in January-May 2019 imported 243 tonnes of similar products worth $171,000 from Senegal, while in January-May 2018 it imported 15,457 tonnes of titanium ore and concentrate worth $2.854 million from Senegal.
As reported, Ukraine in 2018 increased exports of titanium containing ore and concentrate in kind by 2.7% compared to 2017, to 599,494 tonnes. Last year exports of titanium ore and concentrate in monetary terms increased by 19.5%, to $125.722 million. Major exports were made to the Czech Republic (19.41% of deliveries in monetary terms), Turkey (17.96%), and Russia (15.68%).
Ukraine in 2018 imported 15,874 tonnes of similar products worth $3.142 million from Senegal and Mozambique, while in 2017 it imported 202 tonnes of titanium ore and concentrate worth $143,000 from Senegal (87.41%), Finland (10.49%), and Iran (2.1%).
Vilnohirsk state mining and metallurgical combine (Dnipropetrovsk region), Irshansk state mining and processing combine (Zhytomyr region), Valki-Ilmenite and Mezhdurechensk Mining and Concentration Complexes (both are located in Irshansk, Zhytomyr region) are the main producers of titanium ore in Ukraine.
Dnipro-based Velta production and commercial firm built a mining and processing complex at the Birzulivske ilmenite deposit, which has a 240,000-tonne ilmenite concentrate capacity per year.
Holding company Velta Group Global Ltd. was registered in London in November 2011.
Exports of grain crops in the 2017/2018 marketing year (July 2017 through June 2018) totaled 39.4 million tonnes and amounted to $6.4 billion, according to the State Fiscal Service of Ukraine. The largest buyers of Ukrainian grain in this period were Egypt ($ 724 million, with a share of 11.4%), China ($594 million, 9.3%), Spain ($459 million, 7.2%), Indonesia ($375 million, 5.9%) and the Netherlands ($348 million, 5.5%).
In particular, Ukraine exported 17.8 million tonnes of maize worth $2.86 billion (China’s share was 16.4%, Egypt accounted for 13.6%, and the Netherlands for 12.2%). Exports of wheat totaled 17.2 million tonnes worth $2.83 billion (Indonesia with 13.3%, Egypt with 11.8%, and Bangladesh with8.7%); while exports of barley stood at 4.3 million tonnes worth $0.64 billion (Saudi Arabia with 41.2%, China with 19.3%, and Libya with 6.6%).
As noted, 99% of all grain was shipped by sea (39 million tonnes). The ports of Chornomorsk (formerly Illichivsk) accounted for 22% of all grain shipments by sea, the port of Odesa accounted for 19%, Yuzhny for 19%, and Mykolaiv for 18%. At the same time, 306,000 tonnes (0.8%) was exported by rail and almost 80,000 tonnes (0.2%) by road.
Ukraine in the 2016/2017 marketing year exported 43.8 million tonnes of grain, the Ukrainian Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food earlier reported.