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Russia's Arctic ports see 2018 cargo traffic spike

SEA ports located in Russia's Arctic region saw cargo volumes rise by 25 per cent in 2018 to total 92

Russia's Arctic ports see 2018 cargo traffic spike

SEA ports located in Russia's Arctic region saw cargo volumes rise by 25 per cent in 2018 to total 92

08 February 2019 - 19:00

SEA ports located in Russia's Arctic region saw cargo volumes rise by 25 per cent in 2018 to total 92.7 million tonnes, of which 70 per cent comprised oil products and liquified natural gas.

By far the biggest cargo traffic growth was recorded by the port of Sabetta that handles liquified natural gas produced by Novatek in the grand Yamal LNG project, according to data released by the Russian Transport Ministry. The port located on the northeastern tip of the Yamal peninsula handled 17.4 million tonnes of goods, a year-on-year increase of 130 per cent, The Independent Barents Observer from Norway reported.



Other key seaports in the Russian north are also experiencing significant growth. Port installations in Murmansk in 2018 handled a total of 60.7 million tonnes, up 18.1 per cent compared to 2017. Never before in the post-Soviet period has Murmansk had such high shipping volumes. The previous record was achieved in 2010 when 56.6 million tonnes were handled.



Several companies are involved in terminal activities in Murmansk, among them the Murmansk Commercial Seaport. In 2018, the company handled 16.25 million tonnes, up 3.5 per cent, port general director Aleksandr Masko said during a press conference.



Coal makes of the lion's share of goods shipped out from Murmansk, followed by iron, nickel and apatite concentrates, as well as construction materials and several other kinds of goods. The biggest growth in local shipping is oil and gas, much of which is reloaded in ship-to-ship operations.



The port of Arkhangelsk also experienced significant growth in 2018. Goods volumes rose by 15.5 per cent to 2.8 million tonnes.



Not all regional ports saw growth in 2018. Lukoil's Varandey terminal, the installation located on the coast of the Pechora Sea, suffered a volume decline of 15.3 per cent, Infranews reports. The terminal in 2018 handled a total of seven million tonnes of oil.



The decline in deliveries from Varandey is related to the conflict between operator Lukoil and Rosneft. The latter demands a reduction in tariffs on the oil shipped out from site. In a sign of protest, Rosneft in 2018 introduced a 50 per cent production cut in the fields delivering to Varandey.



In 2018, the volumes of goods shipped on the Northern Sea Route amounted to 18 million tonnes.


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