Korea’s largest trading company, POSCO Daewoo, has signed an agreement with Ukraine’s Orexim Group to buy 75% of an export grain terminal in Mykolaiv, southern Ukraine, one of the main export hubs around the Black Sea, reported PortSEurope on 14 February.
The 2.5M tonnes/year terminal is under construction with completion scheduled for July 2019.
Orexim Group is one of Ukraine's leading logistics companies, exporting 1.4M tonnes of sunflower oil in 2017, representing 30% of total outbound sunflower oil shipments, according to the Korea Times.
With the acquisition, POSCO Daewoo would become the first Korean firm to operate an overseas grain terminal, and it would have logistics control over a significant amount of Ukrainian grain coming into the terminal, the South Korean trading firm said. Approximately 22% of Ukraine's grain exports went through Mykoliv port, it added.
"This [acquisition] has significant meaning as it contributes to Korea’s food security," a POSCO Daewoo official said. "POSCO Daewoo aims to become Korea's largest food resources company, capable of handling 15M tonnes of food, and is working on building a food value chain starting from the farm to logistics."
According to the United States Department of Agriculture, Ukraine's grain exports would reach 75M tonnes in 2027, attracting investment from major agricultural traders such as Cargill, Glencore and Japan’s Sumitomo Corporation.