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Potential investor of Russia's Belkomur railway to attend Arctic Forum

March 09, 12:26 UTC+3 ARKHANGELSK

The Belkomur project is a new railway route, which will connect industrially developed regions in Siberia and the Urals with ports in Russia’s North and North-West

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© Yuri Smityuk/TASS

ARKHANGELSK, March 7. /TASS/. Potential investor in construction of the Belkomur railway and the Arkhangelsk deepwater seaport - China's Poly Group will participate in the upcoming Arctic Forum, due in Arkhangelsk on March 29-30, Director General of the Belkomur Company Vladimir Shchelokov told TASS.

"The Chinese government has confirmed (the Belkomur and port's) investor Poly Group will take part in the Arctic Forum," he said.

On Tuesday (March 7), a delegation of the Arkhangelsk region, led by Igor Orlov, and a Chinese delegation, led by Vice President of China’s Poly Group Wang Lin, had a meeting in Moscow. The Chinese representative plans to make a speech on investment in the project at the Arctic: Territory of Dialogue Forum in Arkhangelsk on March 29-30. Belkomur's director general said Poly Group, a part of which is Poly International Holding Co., presently is considered the sole supplier of services.

"We have been working with this partner for more than two years now," head of the Russian company said. "The continuing negotiation process has developed to the stage of suggesting common action."

Meetings and presentations at Arctic Forum

The forum organizers are working on meetings during the event, on presentations of the deepwater port and Belkomur for the Russian and Chinese sides, including for the Chinese authorities and businesses. China's international logistics concern COSCO and the China Marine Fuel Service Corporation have confirmed their participation in the event, head of the Russian company said. "We continue moving on to see foreign counterparts, who will use the port and the railway for the cargo moving from China into Europe," he said, adding the Chinese side had confirmed it was ready to finance construction of the Belkomur railway and of the Arkhangelsk sea port. "The Chinese side has confirmed they are ready to finance both projects, they are waiting for decisions of the Russian side," he said.

One of the suggestions from the Chinese side is to put on agenda for co-chairs of the Russian-Chinese commission on preparations for regular meetings of prime ministers - Russia's Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin and Vice Premier of the State Council of the People's Republic of China Wang Yang - issues of cooperation in development of the Arctic, including joint exploitation of the Northern Sea Route, construction of the Belkomur railway and of the Arkhangelsk deepwater sea port, as well as cooperation in the energy, scientific expeditions and tourism in the Arctic region.

About project

The Belkomur project is a new railway route, which will connect industrially developed regions in Siberia and the Urals with ports in Russia’s North and North-West. The project will add to effective development of the Arctic projects and will form the international railway route across Russia between Russia’s European North and China, thus cutting by 800km the transportation distance for deliveries from Siberia and the Urals.

At the regional level, the project will boost up industrial and social-economic developments in Komi, Perm, Arkhangelsk, Murmansk and other adjusting areas. As the route is implemented, another 39 investment projects will develop further the North-Western part of Russia, attracting more than 720 billion rubles (almost $13 billion) in private investments, and offering 28,000 new jobs. The new railway’s annual capacity will be 35 million tons.

Coal, mineral fertilizers, oil, timber, ores, construction materials, containers will be taken to the backbone ports of the Northern Sea Routes: to the ports of Murmansk, Arkhangelsk, Belomorsk, and later on also to Sabetta. The extra-budgetary funding of the railway construction will exceed 260 billion rubles ($4.5 billion). As the exploitation term (26 years) expires, the Belkomur railway will be transferred for further use to the Russian Federation.

Arkhangelsk deepwater port

The Arkhangelsk deepwater port is a potential backbone infrastructure of the Northern Sea Route. Across the White Sea the port has a direct access to the ocean, thus granting independence of navigation from whatever political conditions. Construction of the port is a part of the Russian transport strategy to 2030. The new port will offer a more attractive alternative route for exported and imported goods to Europe, North America, the Asia-Pacific region (first of all China), and will offer an independent exist for large vessels into the World Ocean.

Construction of a new deepwater port in Arkhangelsk is connected with the Belkomur railway project to cut transportation distance for cargoes from the Urals and Siberia by 800km.

Arctic Forum

The Arctic: Territory of Dialogue Forum is a key international platform for discussing problems and future of the Arctic area at the global level. The forum is supported by the Russian government and its objective is to unite efforts of the international community for effective development of the Arctic and for higher living standards for the people living there.

The first forum took place in 2010 and was devoted to modern problems of the Arctic region. The second forum in 2011 focused on formation of the Arctic transport systems, and the event in 2013 touched upon environmental safety. This year, the event’s key topic is "People and the Arctic." The forum’s organizer is the Roscongress Foundation. The Fourth Forum will take place in Arkhangelsk on March 29-30. It will feature about 1,500 participants from Russia and other countries. Tass is the general information sponsor.

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