The year 2010 was a breakthrough year for commercial transit shipping on the Northeast Passage (and NSR), and interest from the international business community grew even further in 2011. However, from a practical point of view planning of transit shipping within Russian territorial waters for many foreign charterers, cargo owners and ship-owners is a both challenging and intimidating endeavour. Knowledge of the Russian regulatory framework for shipping, the permitting process, of technical requirements for ships, navigational routes, and icebreaker assistance is all essential. At present there is no one source that contains such relevant information in English for the commercial shipping industry.
Figure: Andrey A. Smirnov from Rosatomflot (left), Sergey Balmasov Head of the Arctic Logistics Information Office, Rune Rafaelsen from Barents Secretariat, Felix Tschudi from Tschudi Shipping Company, State Secretary from Norwegian Foreign Ministry Erik Lahnstein and Mikhail Belkin from Rosatomflot joining forces for High North logistics. (Photo: Jonas Karlsbakk)
CHNL’s Arctic Logistics Information Office (ARCLIO) was established in April 2011 in Kirkenes. Added support came from FSUE Rosatomflot (providing consultation) and the Norwegian Barents Secretariat (financial support). ARCLIO strives to become an important source of practical information on NSR transits for the shipping industry.
The main activities to date include establishing cooperation with Russian organizations which are directly involved in the arrangement of shipping and logistics on the NSR, i.e. those that are the primary sources of important information and knowledge about shipping in Arctic waters. This will allow ARCLIO to present relevant and reliable information to the international shipping community, oil and gas industry, and other business enterprises interested in the region.
Already much information has been collected such as a number of books and documents listing the requirements for the design, equipment and supplies, rules and regulations for navigation on NSR. All essential documents not available in English will be translated from Russian to English. This information will then be made available in as clear and understandable fashion as possible on ARCLIO’s own website www.arctic-lio.com which will be linked to both CHNL’s website and the ARCTIS database. The plan is to launch ARCLIO’s webpage on 25th of April 2012 in Helsinki during the 8th Annual Arctic Shipping Forum.