VLADIVOSTOK, June 7 (Xinhua) -- Russia has unveiled plans to invest 2 trillion rubles (about 24.58 billion U.S. dollars) in the development of its Northern Sea Route (NSR) over the next 13 years, and a draft law prepared by the government has already passed the first reading in the State Duma, announced Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin on Tuesday.
Speaking at a strategic session on the "Development of the Northern Sea Route," Mishustin emphasized the crucial role of the NSR in enhancing transportation connectivity for the remote territories of the country.
The strategic session evaluated the progress in implementing the NSR development plan approved in August 2022, which includes the construction of more than 50 icebreakers and ice-class ships, the establishment of ports, terminals, emergency rescue centers, and the deployment of an orbital satellite constellation.
To fulfill this comprehensive plan, it is estimated that about 2 trillion rubles will need to be invested over the next 13 years, of which about one-third, or 600 billion rubles (about 7.37 billion dollars), will be allocated from the federal budget, Mishustin specified.
The prime minister highlighted that this ambitious undertaking signifies the creation of a new Arctic economy, and cited projects that have already been realized, such as the launch of an ice radar satellite from the Vostochny cosmodrome last week, as part of the modern management system.
He also mentioned notable achievements, such as the presence of three nuclear-powered icebreakers, including the world's most powerful icebreaker, the Arktika. Furthermore, the Utrenny marine terminal in the Gulf of Ob is scheduled to host a floating LNG production plant in August.
The prime minister stressed the importance of creating a comprehensive infrastructure complex, which encompasses new ports, technical and emergency stations, weather and ice monitoring systems, and a traffic management system spanning the entire Northern Sea Route.
As part of this initiative, five meteorological satellites will be launched ahead of schedule this year to provide continuous surveillance and assistance across all Arctic routes, he added. ■