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Saturday 19.08.2017 | Name days: Melānija, Imanta

Court to hear Ventspils Grain Terminal's complaint on refusal to expand

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Vladislav Shafranskis

On March 5, at 10:30 AM, Liepaja’s Administrative District Court will review AS Ventspils Grain Terminal’s complaint about the Ventspils City Council’s refusal to allow the terminal to expand.

According to the judge’s assistant Jana Petrenko, the court hearing in January was adjourned based on Points 1 and 2 of Part 1 of Section 269 of the Administrative Process Law. This section states that a court may adjourn the adjudicating of a matter if it finds that: (1) the adjudicating of the matter is impossible because a participant in the administrative proceeding, a witness, an expert or interpreter has failed to attend; or (2) evidence still needs to be gathered.

Last year, the Administrative District Court of Liepaja initiated proceedings against Ventspils City Council based on the plea from Ventspils Grain Terminal in regard to the city council’s decline to allow the company to realize its expansion project in the territory of Ventspils Free port. The company wants the court to order the city council to secure an administrative act, allowing Ventspils Grain Terminal to expand. The company believes there is no other legal argument for the council to ban it from expanding.

Ventspils City Council explains its decision with the negative public backlash in response to the company’s initiative to expand (520 residents of Ventspils supported the initiative of the company, 106 residents were against it), says Chairman of the company Vladislav Shafranskis. “The result of the public discussion shows that the majority of residents support the development of the port and understand the necessity for foreign investments,” – Shafranskis adds.

As reported, in 2011, officials of Ventspils City Council declined the grain terminal’s initiative to build a second department in Ventspils, on Dzintaru Street, municipality reports.

Officials of the City Council dismissed the initiative, which provided for extending the terminal’s warehouse park. If the project had been carried out, the terminal’s warehouse would have been able to hold 130 000 tons of grain, as opposed to the current capacity of 70 000 tons. This would have increased the terminal’s processing power from the current 1.5 million tons to 2.5 million tons annually.

Seven officials of the For Latvia and Ventspils Party voted against the terminal’s initiative. Officials of the opposition Ivars Landmanis and the currently non-party Aleksandrs Mirvis voted against the refusal, while opposition official Dace Korna abstained.

Non-party official Shafranskis did not participate in the vote, as he is the Chairman of Ventspils Grain Terminal.

The public discussion of the terminal’s initiative was held throughout September 30 to October 28, 2011. During this period, 613 surveys and a letter from the tenants of a residential house on Dzintaru 34 Street in Ventspils were received.

Ventspils City Council  explains that its decision was based on the Construction Law, regulations for environmental protection and the opinion of the residents from the house on Dzintaru 34 Street.


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