• Oleksiy BURCHEVSKYY | Kinstellar

    The introduction for Ukrainians of visa-free travel to the EU, effective from 11 June 2017, has encouraged domestic and international airlines to increase traffic at Ukrainian airports. Several major international carriers, including Qatar Airways and Swiss Air, have connected Kyiv to their global networks. The low-cost segment has thrived as well. Italian budget carrier Ernest entered the lucrative Ukraine–Italy market, and Azal subsidiary Buta Airways offers a relatively cheap service to Baku.

    Low-cost carrier Ryanair continued to make aviation news in Ukraine. On 10 July 2017, the airline cancelled its planned entry into Ukraine, only to later revive its plans on 23 March 2018, when Ryanair announced flights to Kyiv and Lviv, with possible expansion to Odesa, Dnipro, Kherson and Kharkiv. This move followed the failed attempts of Ukraine International Airlines to challenge Ryanair’s arrangements with Ukrainian airports in the courts. In order to address the increased competition, the Ukrainian flag carrier reinforced its fleet with brand-new Boeing 737-800 NGs and expanded long-haul operations.

    Despite continuous efforts by the State Aviation Administration of Ukraine to liberalise the market by easing or removing frequency restictions, some destinations remained closed. One of Ryanair’s local low-cost competitors — Atlas Global Ukraine — ceased all regular operations in April 2018, reportedly after its repeated failure to receive a Kyiv — Istanbul slot from the Ukrainian side. No signs of signature of the Common Aviation Area Agreement between the EU and Ukraine are visible yet.


  • Tatiana TITARENKO | Legran.TT

    Maritime & Shipping is always top of the list of business representatives. A significant number of conflict issues that need to be addressed is usual practice in this area.

    Among the first things to mention is the positive practice of vessel arrest in Ukraine, which followed the enactment of the new Commercial Procedural Code. The terms of arrest were increased, the procedure became more flexible and certain world-recognized mechanisms were introduced, such as the option to arrest a vessel, which is expected to arrive shortly.

    Another trend of this year in Ukraine was a significant increase of disputes with port authorities and other controlling bodies.

    Inter alia, 2017 became a landmark for most Ukrainian agents, which were represented by us in a dispute with Ukrainian Sea Port Authority (USPA) over unlawful canal dues collection at Odessa Sea Port. Thus, we managed to charge sums of canal dues in the amount of over
    USD 400,000 in favor of clients, thereby creating a unique precedent practice. Among the claimants were agents of major container lines, such as ZIM and Evergreen, as well as tramp agents. As of today, other similar claims are still in progress.

    By the end of the year we also faced numerous requests for resolving disputes related to the illegal conduct of environmental and radiological control of vessels by the State Ecological Inspection of Ukraine, which led to damages for the parties concerned. Since these disputes already arise on a regular basis, we assume that this may become the keynote of 2018. As a result,
    the authorities may be found liable for all expenses and damages related to improper conduct of customary procedures.

    As well as before, there were also many traditional disputes in our practice related to collection of demurrage, dispatch, freight and other payments under charter parties.


Ante Law Firm is a highly-focused domestic team with recognized strength in the aviation sector, commending full service legal support to airlines in Ukraine, including litigations, taxation, antimonopoly, labor, regulatory issues. The firm is a counsel to 7 out of the top 20 Airlines of 2017 as per the world airline Skytrax rating, and assisted the “Big 4” companies with aviation law issues. In 2017 the team supported the wave of new aviation market players and comebacks. For example, it acted for Qatar Airways with their operations in Ukraine; advised new Ukrainian airline SkyUp and few foreign airlines regarding opening subsidiaries in Ukraine. Moreover, a number of cases regarding possible violation of the Crimea peninsula flight zone were considered by the State Aviation Service of Ukraine in favor of Ante’s clients (Russian Federation aircraft were using EU airlines callsigns). The practice spans cargo, handling and warehouse services operations; purchase of jets and regulatory issues; ICAO standards and recommended practices applicability to the construction of buildings near airports. Ticket agents and tour operators also make up a strong niche of the practice. Among other significant clients areLufthansa, Austrian, Swiss, Emirates, British Airways, Alitalia, Air France, UMAir, Bravo Airways, Style Avia, Avialiga, and others. Highly-visible Andriy Guck is one of the most acclaimed lawyers in the aviation sector. He is supported by the senior team of Kateryna Ishchenko and Roman Storonskiy.

ECOVIS Bondar & Bondar Law Bureau is known for its established position in the sector, advising clients on a broad spectrum of matters includingcorporate, antimonopoly, dispute resolution and tax. The firm’s core client, Ukraine International Airlines (UIA), regularly instructs it for various representations. This past year the firm acted for UIA in connection with a dispute with Motor Sich Airlines and State Aviation Service regarding expanding number of Kyiv — Minsk routes granted to Motor Sich Airlines. Other recent cases included three lawsuits against Lviv Airport and the Ministry of Infrastructure of Ukraine with regard to exceptions granted to the Irish low-cost airline Ryanair; and a number of disputes on recovery of state aviation charges. Other clients include INTERAVIA LLC, Aerohandling, and private investors. Oleg Bondar, managing partner, is one of the most experienced experts in the aviation sector, renowned for his strong dispute resolution practice and aviation regulatory expertise.

This past year INTEGRITES demonstrated engagement in a range of disputes representing notable aviation clients. The firm handled representations in commercial, labor, and regulatory issues. Another area of expertise is competition law advice in the aviation sector. Some significant clients are supported on operational activities in Ukraine. Oleksiy Feliv, managing partner, leads instructions in aviation.

Ilyashev & Partners is known for its consistent presence in the aviation area and established clients following from the maritime and shipping area. Long-standing client State Enterprise Antonov constantly hires the firm for dispute representation. For example, the firm acts for SE Antonov in its arbitration dispute withLibyan Arab Air Cargo in the ICC at the UCCI in respect of indebtedness for technical servicing of an aircraft. The firm is traditionally active in maritime and inland navigation matters. The firm has recently represented Arenka Makina Sanayi ve Ticaret Ltd (Turkey) in ensuring arrest of a vessel in Reni sea port; handled representation of Optima Shipping Limited in a dispute with Horndom Limited about non-fulfilment of a freight contract. Another established client, Ukrrichflot, is currently represented in a claim against SE Administration of Seaports of Ukraine on debt collection as of a ship agency service contract in sea ports, and in the event of canal dues being charged. In a recent highlight the firm advised Ukrrichflot on agreements on the sublease of rail stock. Well-known litigator Roman Marchenko,senior partner, leads the practice.

The long-established local firm Jurvneshservice has strong expertise inaircraft financing, often working alongside international law firms. The dedicated team represented Apollo Aviation on the purchase of two aircraft registered in Ukraine and on lease to Ukraine International Airlines. The firm also advises on corporate, antimonopoly, tax, labor and employment, recognition and enforcement of arbitral awards, escrow matters within aircraft sale. The separate practice regards compulsory repossession of aircraft from Ukrainian airlines, as foreign creditors continue to meet both legislative and administrative obstacles in the process of repossession of aircraft. The firm represented Apollo Aviation on repossession of an aircraft engine from JanAir. Recent repossessions have been made in the interests of KV Aviation UK Limited, GRAF1 (Aviation) WSA Limited, AAR Aircraft and Engines Sales and Leasing, Inc., Apollo Aviation Management Limited. The practice is headed by Anna Tsirat, with key contribution from Kateryna Tsirat.

In response to involvement in a number of aviation-related matters, ARBITRADE established a standalone aviation law practice at the firm. For example, the firm became the permanent legal advisor in Ukraine of an Italian law cost airline called Ernest Airlines, following its entry into the Ukrainian market in September 2017 and launch of flights from Lviv Airport and the Zhuliany Kyiv Airport to several destinations in Italy. Andriy Shulga is the lead partner.

Suprema Lex develops its primary focus on aviation, and maintains steady support to shippers, automobile transport and servicing companies. This past year saw the firm advising a low-cost air carrier on entering the Ukrainian market, and supported Buta Airways (low-cost). Significant clients include Khoriv-avia, Ukrainian Helicopters, Ukraine International Airlines, Imperator-avtotrans, The great bear (BM-TRANS), Cordo International, Yunico Logistics Baku. Viktor Moroz, managing partner, is mostly known for handling instructions involving helicopters.

Baker McKenzie traditionally holds strong positions in infrastructure and financing transactions, being enlisted for transactions to finance or lease transportation vehicles. The international firm represents significant lessors, lenders and arrangers of aircraft transactions. It is also acclaimed for debt restructuring and insolvency matters, competition, corporate and M&A, compliance and dispute resolution. Partner Ihor Olekhov, a well-known banking lawyer, retains his sharp focus on the aviation industry, including aircraft finance and aircraft lease. Serhiy Piontkovsky, managing partner, is dedicated to infrastructure matters, advising both foreign and domestic investors.

Vasil Kisil & Partners demonstratesa vivid practice of aviation finance. The firm advised DAE, one of the world’s largest aircraft lessors, and KAHALA, one of the biggest international companies engaged in acquiring, leasing and trading commercial aircraft and related equipment, on aircraft sale, as well as on financing and lease matters in connection with the execution of a large-scale agreement for sale of a portfolio of 30 aircraft worth over USD 260 million in total, which have been leased to 16 airlines in 14 countries around the world. Another highlight is advising Castlelake and DAE on the sale of an aircraft leased to a Ukrainian airline, as well as on financing and lease matters in connection with an upcoming aircraft-backed term securitization loan facility. Anna Sisetska is the lead partner.

Prominent in the maritime and shipping market, the Odessa-based Interlegal law firm assists significant shipping and shipbuilding companies, ship and cargo owners, charterers, insurers, freight forwarders, carrier lessees, dredging operators. The firm has a big scope practice empowered by a network of offices in Turkey, Georgia, Bulgaria, Moldova and Romania. The firm has a flourishing dispute resolution, including arbitration, practice related to specific maritime area, debt collection and contractual disputes. The practice is comprehensive and includes ship arrests, cargo and demurrage claims, repair of vessels, freight matters, yachting. The dedicated firm has a strong team, including such partners as Arthur Nitsevych, Nikolay Melnykov, Natalia Myroshnychenko, Artem Skorobogatov and Irina Voyevodina. The market knows the name of senior associates Andrey Perepelitsa and Alexey Remeslo.

Odessa-based and highly-reputed ANK Law Office traditionally operates in shipping and maritime law, being among the major legal counsels in the three biggest ports of Ukraine (Odessa, Chornomorsk, Yuzhniy). The firm is preferred by leading P&I Clubs, shipowners and ship managers on issues connected with vessels arrests, insurance accidents with seafarers, damage to hydraulic facilities, marine pollution and other matters. In 2017 the team gave legal support to TT Club Mutual Insurance Ltd (UK) within insurance even connected with flooding of the container terminal of Odessa Sea Port caused by a heavy storm on 13 October 2016. Major clients take in NORTH P&I, London P&I, SKULD, West of England P&I, Ingosstrakh, TT Club, UK P&I Club, Shipowners P&I, Standard P&I Club, TRANSHIP, National Navigation Company of Egypt, MSC Shipmanagement. Alexander Kifak and Artyom Volkov are lead partners, supported by the sizeable team of Sergey Nedelko, Vladyslav Brig, Nina Kostyuk.

Jurline, a domestic law outfit based in Odessa,traditionally has strong dedication to support the marine business. It has long-standing relationships with various enterprises operating in the ports of Ukraine, including Odessa, Yuzhniy, Chornomorsk, Mykolayiv, Izmail, Reni, etc. The firm’s remint is to provide a full range offering to transport enterprises, marine terminals, freight forwarders, brokerage services, ship agency services, ship repair facilities, as well as other business entities associated with port infrastructure. The firm also operates in the passenger sector and public road transportation. The firm has good expertise in disputes related to the carriage of goods by rail, road and sea, as well as legal support for freight forwarding and customs clearance. Among the clients to note are grain terminal LLC IGT, ship-repair yard LLC ISRY, TIS-Grain Ltd, LLC Terminal Capital Invest, LLC TIS-Mindobryva, LLC TIS, Cargill, Inc. (MV Cargo — terminal in port of Yuzhniy), PJSC Severtrans, PJSC Odessavtotrans and others. The senior team includes partners Oleg Kutateladze, Oleksiy Ryazanov, Maxim Kapelist, counsel Vitaliy Kutateladze, and is led by Volodymyr Zubar.

LeGran.TT, is an Odessa-based law firm with a distinct focus on a full spectrum of maritime law issues. The experience spans procedures on vessel arrest, collection of demurrage and detention, non-payment of freight. This past year saw the firm receive a sound win in favor of ZIM in a case on canceling canal dues against the Ukraine Sea Ports Authority. These court decisions were unique for court practice and led other container lines and their agents to appeal to the court with similar claims for collections. Another notable representation is Olimpex Coupe International, a Sea Port Operatorin dispute with the Ukrainian Sea Port Authority on discounts for access to a pier at Odessa Sea Port. Other clients to note are Inzernoexport, BSA Ukraine, Container Lines Association of Ukraine, Odemara, Black Sea Commodities. Managing partner Tatiana Titarenko is rapidly gaining market recognition and is endorsed for her knowledge of this sector.

As a leading name in commodities trading and arbitrations, AGA Partners focuses on supportinginternational traders and shipowners in the course of transportation of goods by sea. This past year the firm strengthened its expertise even further in the area of fulfillment charter party contracts and resolving maritime disputes pertaining to cargo damage, demurrage and freight. Moreover, the firm handled several cases related to vessel arrests in Iran and advised on the legal regime of the Kerch Strait. The recent case history takes in recovery of damages under a charter party contract from one of the largest shipowners in Black Sea Region at LMAA. All three partners, namely Aminat Suleymanova, Ivan Kasynyuk and Irina Moroz are involved in project work.

The Odessa-based Sergeyevs’ Law Office is a local firm dedicated to representing local and foreign companies involved in maritime practice and advising on related insurance, labor and employment issues. The standout feature of this firm is representing clients’ interests before maritime administrations and other authorities and organizations in foreign jurisdictions (UK, USA, Cyprus, Singapore, Hong Kong, Greece, China, India, Germany, IOM, Antigua and Barbuda, Australia, Tunisia, Switzerland). In 2017 the office advised on tax matters. For example, it represented a reputable marine crewing company in a USD 2 million tax dispute. The representative clients of the team are SC V.Ships, SC CMA Ships Ukraine, BSM Crew Service Centre Ukraine Ltd, ABC Maritime LLC, Wilhelmsen Marine Personnel (Ukraine) Ltd, SC Danaos Ukraine, Deep Sea Supply Crew (Ukraine) Ltd, etc. Yuriy Sergeyev and Svetlana Sergeyeva are at the forefront of maritime practice.

Asters, a full-service law firm, is known for advising aircraft and aircraft parts manufacturers, other transportation industry players. For example, the firm renders general corporate support on the day-to-day activity of Boeing’s subsidiary in Ukraine. Another significant client, the Wizz Air Group, received consistent legal assistance on a wide range of Ukrainian legal matters. The team is the port of call for contractual regulation in transport and logistics area, business structuring, competition, and litigation. The broad-based practice is led by two partners, Oleksiy Demyanenko and Vadym Samoilenko.

Market insiders supported Oleksiy Burchevskyy (previously — in-house at Wizz Air Ukraine) for his deep understanding of legal support to airlines. He joined the Kyiv office of Kinstellar as a knowledge lawyer and head of the firm-wide aviation sector. The firm has already won a mandate for high-profile litigations and regulatory advice.

Eterna Law handles representation in arbitrations, including under LMAA Terms, and recognition of arbitration awards, managing settlement agreements out of breach of shipping arrangements and supply agreements. The firm also represented the interests of one of the largest foreign companies in aviation leasing in the process of recognition and enforcement of a decision of the International Commercial Arbitration Court. Eugene Blinov, partner, is in charge of the majority of cases on maritime and shipping.

PRAVO Law Office, an Odessa-based domestic boutique, commands expertise in international arbitration and commercial disputes, ship arrest and regulatory issues. Managing partner Andriy Kostin is an internationally known maritime expert.

SDM Partners has experience of advising international operators of civil and cargo aircraft regarding entry into the Ukrainian air transportation market, establishment of the appropriate airport infrastructure and supporting investment projects in Ukrainian airports. Dmytro Syrota and Serhiy Dzis are the main contacts.

GOLAW, a Ukrainian law firm with offices in Kyiv and Odessa, added high-profile clients to its profile in the last 12 months. The firm advised VARAMAR Group, an international company in the maritime industry, with protection of shareholder rights in several business projects in the United Arab Emirates related to semi-liner and tramp services for transportation of cargo by sea; represented the interests of the Ukrainian Sea and Port Service at the AMCU on the consideration of complaints in public procurement. Valentyn Gvozdiy, managing partner, is the main contact.

Gramatskiy & Partners regularly supports the topic of transportation, which spans expertise to various areas of transport. The firm has worked on developing a model of shipping agents of Ruskon Ukraine for cargo transshipment from automobile vehicles onto marine transport. Finrostorg Group, a long-established client, is instructed to support transit transportation of Chinese goods through EU territory. Roman Pozhodzhuk supervises and coordinates the firm’s transportation practice.