JSC “Murmansk Shipping Company” keeps a leading position in all-year dry bulk and general cargo transport solutions in North-Atlantic and Arctic & Antarctic regions. We provide long-term and competitive services to our customers.
Our goal is to provide efficient and high quality services in due time.
According to the Federal Law on Internal Water Bodies of the Russian Federation of July 31, 1998, № 155-ФЗ, the Northern Sea Route is defined as "a historical national single transport route of the Russian Federation in the Arctic region". Passing via the Northern Sea Route, including the Vilkitskiy Strait, the Shokalsky Strait, the Dmitri Laptev Strait, the Sannikov Strait is regulated by the above-mentioned Federal Law and other federal laws, international agreements of the Russian Federation and shipping regulations for the Northern Sea Route, ratified by the government of the Russian Federation and published in "Notice to Mariners".
Boundaries of the Northern Sea Route are determined by the "Regulation for navigation on the seaways of the Northern Sea Route" of 1990. In accordance with the mentioned regulations "the Northern Sea Route is the national transport route, which runs through internal sea waters, territorial sea (territorial waters) or economic zone of the Russian Federation, adjacent to the northern coast of Russia and restricted with entrances to Novaya Zemlya straits and the meridian of the Cape of Desire northward from the west, and from the east with the Bering Strait parallel to 66o of northern latitude and the meridian 168o 58' 37'' of western longitude".
Geographic location of the Arctic Ocean influences greatly the temperature conditions of the area.
In July the average temperature at the Barents Sea coast is from +1o till +7o and from -5o till -10o in winter; in the north and east the temperature is up to -20o. Storm winds and 6–7 metre-high waves and 4 metre tides at North Cape and up to 7 metre at the White Sea throat are typical for the Barents Sea.
The average temperature in the Kara Sea area in July is from +1o till +6oand from -20o till -28o in January. In summer there are mainly north and north-east winds with mists. In winter the winds are more frequent and stronger, they often turn into hurricane.
The climate of the Laptev Sea area is much more severe. The average temperature in the northern part of the sea is +1o in July, and from -31o till -34o in January. The winds are mainly weak.
In the area of the East Siberian Sea the temperature does not raise above +7o; in the winter the temperature is from -5o till -10o; from December to March it is up to -33o. The temperature of the Chuckchee Sea area is similar to the temperature indexes of the Kara area.
The main features of this shipping route are severe climatic conditions and ice-covered areas. Ice condition of freezing seas is characterized by wide variety of ice. However, ice condition in some part of the Northern Sea Route change within the year and within a distance.
The most favorable navigation period is from August to September. Within this period due to melting ice becomes thinner and more openings in the ice appear.
The ice condition influences the choice of navigation route of icebreakers and carriers.
Coastal, sea and high-latitude piloting are used.
It should be mentioned that the choice of navigation route is made on the actual and predicted information of ice condition and location.
The Northern Sea Route, as a transport communication, is the most important part of the infrastructure in the economic complex of the North. It links the Far East and western areas of the country. The Northern Sea Route unites the largest Siberian waterways into a common transport network. For some arctic areas, such as Chuckot, islands of the arctic seas and some coastal settlements of Taimyr (Dolgano-Nenets) autonomous area, sea transport is the only means of cargo transportation and life support of the inhabitants.
The Northern Sea Route provides for a year-round navigation of Norilsk metallurgical combine that produces 90% of nickel and 65% of copper in Russia. In 2006 2 million tons of cargoes were shipped via the Northern Sea Route.
Today the Northern Sea Route is the only economically feasible way to natural treasures of the Russian north, Siberia and the Far East. According to the forecast, these resources will be the main source of raw materials in the XXI century. At the same time the Northern Sea Route is the alternative shortest waterway between European and Asian-Pacific countries, north-western coast of the USA and Canada. International investigations of 1993-1998 proved that foreign business circles - consignors of goods and ship-owners show interest in the Northern Sea Route. They confirmed the opportunity to use the Northern Sea Route for international commercial shipping in technological, economic and environmental approaches.
The arctic transportation system of the Northern Sea Route includes:
linear, auxiliary and port icebreakers;
buoy and hydrographic vessels;
sea ports and other coastal facilities;
navigation-hydrographic, hydro-meteorological and aeronautical supply, radio communication service;
rescue and fast response services;
administrative bodies of arctic naval operations, that are just in the Arctic or outside the Arctic (the NSR Administration);
headquarters of naval operations and icebreakers fleet operators (of Murmansk and Far East Shipping Companies).
Cargo transportation via the Northern Sea Route is performed mainly by Murmansk, North, Arctic, Far East, Primorsk Shipping Companies. Having entered the market some branches and enterprises of the NSR transformed to different forms of property. The above shipping companies turned into joint stock companies, except the Arctic Shipping Company. Cargo fleet has become the property of these joint stock companies. According to article 71 of the Constitution of the RF icebreaking, rescue, hydrographic, port facilities, polar station network, navigation-hydrographic, hydro-meteorological supply and communication facilities are the state property. The arctic ports, except Pevek, are handed over to the entities of Russian Federation.
Main tasks of supporting safe operation and development of the Northern Sea Route in the market economy within the period till 2015 are:
to keep the Northern Sea Route as a national single transport route of the Russian Federation in the Arctic;
to provide transport support for arctic oilfields development and marine oil and gas export;
to develop large-scale export, transit and cabotage shipping lines and northern deliveries
to create a profitable arctic transport system;
to increase the positive influence of the Northern Sea Route on social life conditions of the north native people;
to prevent environment pollution;
to strengthen national security of Russia in the Arctic.
As nuclear icebreakers, navigation hydrographic and hydro-meteorological facilities of the Northern Sea Route, communication facilities and rescue aids are the property of the state the tasks of integrated development of the Northern Sea Route at Federal level are as follows:
to strengthen state management at the Northern Sea Route;
to develop integrating function of the Northern Sea Route in a northern transport system of the Russian Federation;
to build nuclear icebreakers of new types;
to improve the system of navigation hydrographic and hydro-meteorological means, radio communication service, of first response of rescue services in case of emergency, including oil spill accidents.
to create an equal access to the NSR for all users based on relevant rules and regulations; to encourage the use of the NSR as an international transport passage;
to develop the NSR infrastructure, keeping in mind that it is the most important factor to ensure the protection of borders of the region with a difficult access;
to create a complex Arctic geo-communication system, including information support about the Arctic area and on the NSR;
to improve the system of control and navigation via the NSR;
to supervise the procedure of issuing licenses to commercial enterprises for arctic oilfield development, assuring their participation in financing support in the maintenance of icebreakers, which provide transportation of oil and gas outside ice-covered area;
Level of arctic entities
The tasks of complex development of the Northern Sea Route at the level of arctic entities include:
cooperation of Russian Federation entities with Ministry of Transport of Russian Federation in the problems of the development of regional transport network;
development of ports and offshore transit oil terminals;
participation of RF entities in arrangement and financial support of northern deliveries program, environment protection programs and in reforming the system of energy and provision delivery to the north regions;
Level of enterprises in arctic region
The tasks of complex development of the Northern Sea Route at the level of arctic enterprises include:
building of diesel supply icebreakers and ice class vessels; building of shore transport complex and offshore oil terminals;
establishing of environmental industrial and transport enterprises at the Northern Sea Route.