Renovated transhipment terminal opens in Murmansk

An opening ceremony was held today at the International Arctic Forum for a transhipment terminal in Murmansk. The new transport and logistics hub is capable of processing 1.5 million tonnes of container freight per year.

Norilsk Nickel has completed the reconstruction of a second berth at its Murmansk transport branch. The launch of the second phase will enable the terminal to reach its full capacity and almost double cargo flows from 780,000 tonnes to 1.5 million tonnes per year. The warehouse facilities have space of 100,000 square metres. The berths are equipped with gantry cranes that have lifting capacity ranging from 40 to 80 tonnes. Investment in the project will total roughly RUB 2.4 billion. Norilsk Nickel spent a total of RUB 4.6 billion on the modernization of the Murmansk terminal.

“The terminal’s opening underscores the importance of the Northern Sea Route as a key transport route for Norilsk Nickel and the company’s readiness to invest in developing the transport accessibility of Russia’s Arctic zone. This is an example of the successful development of Arctic infrastructure. In reaching its full capacity, Norilsk Nickel’s transport and logistics hub in Murmansk will contribute to the sustainable development of the Northern Sea Route not only as a key national transport route, but will also ensure transit cargo flows”, Norilsk Nickel Senior Vice President Sergey Batekhin said during the opening ceremony.

Russian Deputy Minister of Transport and Director of the Federal Marine and River Transport Agency Viktor Olersky, who took part in the terminal’s opening ceremony, said the company’s efforts have resulted in a high-quality high-tech product that will be seriously integrated into Norilsk Nickel’s supply chain.

“This terminal optimizes supplies and makes them cheaper and more technologically advanced. It is essential for third-party users, including potential ones, who are currently developing and will be developing in Murmansk. This terminal is a good technological launching pad and a basing site for Arctic projects”.

Murmansk Region Governor Marina Kovtun said the new terminal would increase the capabilities for freight turnover at the Murmansk port. “One and a half million tonnes is a significant amount of transhipment, which will create new jobs, develop the Murmansk port as a whole, improve the region’s investment appeal, and enhance the status of the Murmansk port as the main port of the Arctic zone”.

Norilsk Nickel not only owns port infrastructure in the Arctic, but is also a ship owner. The company uses its own fleet consisting of six reinforced seventh icebreaker class vessels and two auxiliary vessels to ship products via the Northern Sea Route. Norilsk Nickel cooperates with Atomflot in order to ensure the continuous operation of its fleet.

Batekhin and Atomflot CEO Vyacheslav Ruksha signed an agreement today that envisages the icebreaker escort of Norilsk Nickel vessels in the fast ice of the Yesinei River and Yesinei Gulf during the winter navigation periods. The agreement, which runs until 2022, extends a contract that has been in effect since 2009.

Following the signing of the agreement, Ruksha noted: “Norilsk Nickel has broken the mould for shipping in the Arctic. Shipping in the Arctic should have the exact same parameters as in the open sea and these parameters (speed of 10-12 knots with an average speed of 14 knots in the open sea) are being ensured thanks to Norilsk Nickel”.