Putin: Northern Sea Route’s Traffic to Increase Tenfold by 2025

The volume of cargo traffic along the Northern Sea Route will increase tenfold to 80 million tonnes by 2025, the Russian President Vladimir Putin said in his address to the Federal Assembly on March 1.

Putin pointed out that the route will be the key to developing the Russian Arctic and Far East.

“Our goal is to make it a truly global and competitive transport route. Let me remind you that the Northern Sea Route was used more actively in Soviet times compared to how we have been using it so far. We will definitely develop this route and reach new horizons,” Putin said.

The Northern Sea Route, which is a much shorter alternative to the Suez Canal, is gaining on importance amid the reduction of ice in the Arctic and the design of new ice-breaking commercial vessels, which have made the transportation of abundant Arctic natural energy resources commercially viable.

“We will continue our proactive policy to attract investment and create social and economic growth centers in Russia’s Far East,” Putin added.

“A number of large-scale industrial projects have been launched in the Arctic. They comply with the highest environmental standards. We are strengthening the research, transport, navigation and military infrastructure, which is expected to guarantee Russia’s interests in this strategic region. Russia builds cutting-edge nuclear icebreakers. We have had the most powerful icebreaker fleet in the world, and this will remain so.”

The area is home to Yamal LNG Project, which is the world’s first large-scale energy project that exports cargoes through the Northern Sea Route. In addition, new projects are also being developed in the Arctic area, following in the steps of the Yamal LNG Project.

The Northern Sea Route witnessed a record volume as 9.7 million tons of cargo were shipped on the route during 2017.