MOSCOW, March 29. /TASS/. The loading volume of the Northern Sea Route has great potential for expansion after the blocking of the Suez Canal, used to pass up to 12% of the world cargo traffic, the Russian Energy Ministry told reporters on Monday.
"The Northern Sea Route, the navigation time on which continues to expand and in 2020 reached 9-10 months, has a great potential for expanding the volume of cargo transportation, allowing to significantly reduce the time for transporting goods from Asia to Europe," the ministry said, commenting on the situation the Suez Canal. The ministry recalled that Russia has a unique geographical position, which gives it "natural advantages in the global energy market in terms of access to the main consumer markets, as well as the speed of delivery of fuel and energy complex goods."
The Ministry of Energy added, "restriction of supplies in the Suez Canal almost did not affect the supply of Russian Urals oil, which uses other delivery routes."
According to the ministry, in 2020 the cargo traffic along the Northern Sea Route exceeded the planned values and amounted to almost 33 mln tonnes of cargo, including over 18 mln tonnes of liquefied natural gas (LNG). "We expect further growth in supplies and the fulfillment of the task set by Russian President Vladimir Putin to increase freight traffic by 2024 to 80 mln tonnes per year," the Energy Ministry concluded.