Posco International, a commodities trader affiliated with South Korean steel giant Posco Holdings, said Tuesday that it is eager to take part in reconstruction projects in Ukraine after the war to help the country rebuild.
The Posco unit is the only Korean company that has maintained its business operations in the war-torn country since the onset of Russia’s invasion on Feb. 24 last year.
It operates a grain terminal in the southern city of Mykolaiv, about 480 kilometers away from the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv. The facility used to handle some 2.5 million tons of wheat, corn and barley for exports to neighboring countries in Europe and Africa since 2019. It also helped ease hikes in grain prices at home as it played a key role in securing supplies amid supply chain disruptions.
In the early days of the war, the facility had to shut down for a few months, but it could resume operation in phases in May.
Hit hard by the war, the grain volume of the facility tumbled to some 310,000 tons in 2022 from 760,000 tons in 2021.
The company said it has 16,000 tons in inventory and plans to complete the shipments by the end of March.
Currently, all employees from Korea are working remotely from Poland, with about 30-40 essential personnel hired locally in Ukraine working at the facility.
“The facility continued operation even during the war not just to meet client demands but also to keep jobs for local workers,” the company said in a statement. “We also hope to play a role in expanding the agricultural value chain in the region after the war ends.”
The company said it will bolster responsiveness for emergency situations and seek ways to further strengthen ties with local agriculture companies. It also hinted at additional investments for storage expansion depending on market demand.
Adding to that, the company also plans to join forces for post-war reconstruction projects in diverse areas using Posco’s prowess in steel, energy, construction and ICT.