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Experiment on allowing foreign ships to enter Ukrainian river ports without single-use permits

On the 17 of May 2021 the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine adopted Resolution № 480 «On implementation of an experimental project on foreign non-military vessels under the flags of countries, with which there are no international treaties of Ukraine on navigation on inland waterways, entering the river ports of Ukraine without obtaining one-time temporary permits» (hereinafter – the Resolution).

Earlier, the relevant proposal to the Cabinet of Ministers was submitted by the Ministry of Infrastructure, motivated by the need to create “favorable conditions for foreign shipowners entering the river ports of Ukraine”. First of all, it concerns the ports of the Dnieper River as the main river navigable artery of Ukraine. The Ministry of Infrastructure will coordinate the project, while USPA shall assist in its implementation.

The said Resolution approved the procedure for implementation of the project, to which a sample application to be submitted by maritime agents is attached.

The resolution suggests temporarily, until the end of 2021, to allow foreign vessels to enter the river ports of Ukraine without receiving one-time permits, which previously were a requirement for vessels flying foreign flags for which there are no contracts with Ukraine.

Any vessel performing cabotage transportations, as well as passenger, sports, sailing vessels and yachts flying the flag of countries, with which Ukraine has no international contract on navigation on inland waterways, can take part in the experimental project, except vessels flying the flag of the Russian Federation, as well as vessels owned or operated by persons against whom Ukraine has imposed sanctions.

In this case the vessel must have ship’s documents and crew qualification documents issued by the EU member countries, and if the flag country is not an EU member – such documents must meet the requirements of the Merchant Shipping Code of Ukraine or the requirements of the international contract in the field of merchant shipping, to which Ukraine is a party.

To participate in the experimental project, the shipowner must submit, through the agent, an application in the prescribed form no later than 3 days before arrival at the port, with scanned copies of the ship’s documents and crew qualification documents attached. Herewith, a checkpoint across the state border of Ukraine must be operating in the port of call. The application should be submitted to the e-mail address of the Maritime Administration ( as a scanned copy, or can be signed with an EDS.

Within 1 working day, an employee of the Maritime Administration will check the application for completeness of the information provided, as well as compliance of ship’s and qualification documents with the requirements of the Procedure, and then post such application on the website of the Maritime Administration in the category “Single-use permits”1. In case of incomplete information or inconsistency of documents with the requirements of the Procedure, the Maritime Administration shall refuse the applicant to participate in the experimental project and send a written refusal to the applicant within one working day from the date of receipt of the application.

In addition, the Procedure obliges the shipowner to provide information stipulated by Ukrainian legislation when entering the inland waterways of Ukraine in the area of the river information service of the “Delta-lotsman” branch.

The Resolution was officially published on May 20 and entered into force on the day of its publication.