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Northern Maritime Corridor: with or without Arkhangelsk?

Northern Maritime Corridor: with or without Arkhangelsk? 14.04.2008
Will Arkhangelsk be included to the Northern Maritime Corridor project or will it remain an onlooker? The future engagement of the region in the prestigious shipping project depends on the development of ports.

The existing Port of Arkhangelsk is not technically suited for big cargo shipping along the NMC route. Big companies in the Urals have expressed interest in dispatching an annual of about 30 million tons of cargo through the port. However, the capacities of the Arkhangelsk port remains not dimensioned for big shipping.

The situation with the port is quite contradictory: on the one hand it uses only 40 percent of its capacities, while most of the other ports in Northwest Russian are running out of available capacities. On the other hand, the port can not take in more, Rosbaltnord.ru reports.

The problem was a topic for discussion at a recent international Northern Maritime Corridor conference with both Russian and internation participants in Arkhangelsk this week.

The Arkhangelsk regional administration sees only one way out. A new deep-water port must be built, Vice-Head of the Department of Transportation, Vladimir Kochurov, says. He believes the new port will be a logical continuation of another transport corridor, the Belkomur railway line. The Belkomur will connect the Perm Krai and the Komi Republic with the sea port of Arkhangelsk.

However, other participants mentioned that whereas Belkomur is a real project with real investors, the project of a new port is more like a sand castle. If the new port in Arkhangelk is not constructed, the main northern port of Russia will remain in Murmansk.

The Murmansk port is already de-facto a participant of the Northern Maritime Corridor.

Source: www.barentsobserver.com, map: ascp.ru

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