What will the air blockade of Belarus mean for the Ukrainian economy, how will it affect the duration and price of flights to the north of Europe (after all, the neighboring country will need to be flown around), and also what the restrictions threaten Belarus itself?
Consequences for Ukraine
Airport "Lviv" has already calculated that it will lose about 1 million UAH per month from the termination of flights with Minsk. From the airport, there was a daily regular flight "Belavia".
Airport "Kyiv" (Zhuliany) said that revenues will decline by 10%. They said that "with the introduction of such a ban, it would be logical for the government to offer the airport some monetary compensators."
Direct flights between Belarus and Ukraine are carried out twice a week by Motor Sich air carrier on the route Minsk - Zaporizhia.
In addition, the revenue of UkSATSE may fall, which has already dropped due to the coronavirus pandemic, avianews notes. In 2020, Belavia was the third in terms of the number of flights performed in the airspace of Ukraine (10 644 flights). In 2020, Belavia accounted for 7.5% of all aviation traffic in Ukraine.
Minsk as a transport hub for trips to Russia
Such figures of losses are explained not by the fact that Minsk is a popular city among tourists, but by the fact that after the termination of direct flights between Ukraine and the Russian Federation in 2015, the city became a transport hub. In Minsk, you can take a plane to Russia for those who work or live there. After the restrictions on May 26, it will be necessary to choose other countries and companies, and this can be significantly more expensive due to the increase in distance.
Flights to northern Europe
If the territory of Belarus is blocked for Ukrainian companies for transit, the price of a ticket to Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Norway, Sweden, Finland may increase. The distance due to overflying the country will increase, the flight time and fuel consumption will increase.
UIA stated that there are a number of routes that pass over the territory of this country.
"The revision of the routes will concern regular flights to Vilnius, as well as to Finland (Helsinki, Vaasa) as part of the airline's individual charter program. On these routes, the flight will average an additional 40 minutes of flight time, and, accordingly, additional costs for aviation fuel," UIA office assures.
At the same time, UIA sees no reason to increase the price of tickets due to the need to fly over.
Aviation blockade of Ukraine
Opportunities for flights from Ukraine were already limited: since 2014, transit through Russia, Crimea, Donetsk, and Luhansk regions has been prohibited. Now neighboring Belarus will be added to the "forbidden territories", which will close the northern direction, reports avianews.
In such conditions, one cannot talk about the development of transit airports in the country, because there is a lot to fly around.
Impact on the delivery speed of "Ukrposhta"
Now "Ukrposhta" will deliver parcels in the direction of Belarus by land transport. Up to 10,000 parcels, small packages, letters were sent from Ukraine to Belarus every month, and almost the same number of items were sent to Ukraine.
Due to the change in the method, changes in the delivery time of items to Belarus are possible.
What do the restrictions mean for Belarus
Restrictions will cause losses to the state-owned company Belavia, for which the Ukrainian market was one of the main ones, reports Avianews.
Belavia makes about 40 flights a week from Minsk to both airports in Kyiv, Lviv, Odesa, and Kharkiv, and also flies through Ukraine to Turkey, Egypt, and Tel Aviv. Now the Ukrainian market will be closed for her, and flights to resorts will become long and expensive.
In addition, the western direction will be closed for the company. After all, restrictions have already been introduced by the governments of Great Britain and France, and the company must cancel flights to London and Paris by at least 30 October.
In the near future, the EU Council should adopt a legal ban for airlines from Belarus to use EU airspace in transit and for direct flights.
Losses for the Belarusian budget
The economic consequences will be felt by Belaeronavigatsia. Before the pandemic, about 600 airliners flew over Belarus every day. Carriers paid for dispatchers' services in the amount of about 40 euros per 100 km of the route. After 2020, the volume of air traffic has dropped to about 450 flights per day.
After May 23, 2021, the losses can be very significant, Belarus can lose tens of millions of euros per month, estimates Radio Svaboda.
Movement across land borders for Belarusians is still strictly limited, Radio Svaboda reports.
Only diplomats, official delegations, truck drivers, business travelers, as well as those traveling to the funeral of a close relative or to the hospital can travel abroad by bus or train. Also, every 6 months, citizens of Belarus who study abroad or live there can leave the country.
Airports of the Russian Federation, China, Turkey, and Egypt remained open for Belavia.
You can use connecting routes in Moscow or Istanbul for flights to the European Union.