Prathama Line

Ukrainian airspace closes while impact on trade expected

By Damian Brett

Ukrainian airspace has been closed as navigation services declare the region an active conflict zone.

Early this morning, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) issued a conflict zone information bulletin covering Kiev, Lviv, Dnipropetrovsk, Simferopol and Odessa flight information regions for all altitudes.

Additionally, as a precautionary measure, the EASA said that operators should exercise extreme caution and avoid using the airspace within 100 nautical miles of the Belarussian and Russia-Ukraine border.

Ukraine’s navigation service, UkSATSE, also suspended the provision of navigation services this morning.

FlightGlobal reports that Russian federal air transport regulator Rosaviatsia says that flights to a number of southern Russian airports are “temporarily limited” owing to “aggravation of the situation in Ukraine”.

These affected airports include Rostov Platov, Voronezch, Krasnodar, Anapa, Stavropol, Gelendzhik, Belgorod, Elista, Bryansk, Kursk, and Simferopol.

The moves comes as Russian military convoys entered Ukraine this morning and missile strikes and explosions were reported at several sites in the country.

Explosions have been reported at several of Ukraine’s airports.

Meanwhile, Flexport’s supply chain economist Chris Rogers has been examining the potential impact of the Ukraine crisis on trade.

Rogers said that there are four major risks to supply chains: Physical availability of commodities produced in Ukraine and Russia (specifically natural gas and oil); global commodity prices (already high) could surge further – adding to inflation pressures; physical disruption of logistics networks as flights are diverted around the conflict zone and transportation insurance costs are likely to rise; and widening sanctions could complicate customs and billing activities – with in an extreme case Russia excluded from the Swift payments system – leaving many reliant on supplies from Russia without access to key materials.

Rogers added that there is also the potential risk of cyber-security incursions which may include logistics firms as collateral damage.

On the flight diversions, Flexport chief executive Ryan Petersen has already reported (February 22) that one charter flights was forced to divert mid-route. Others are now operating on a different route avoiding Ukrainian airspace.

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