Little success for Northern Maritime Corridor

High port dues and lack of free economic port zones with tax preferences for cargo owners have made the EU-Russian project “Northern Maritime Corridor” unprofitable.


The Northern Maritime Corridor (NMC) project is a sea based transportation project which dates back to 2002. The project includes eight countries and 20 regions. The basic idea of the project is to coordinate cargo transport on sea between ports in Northern Europe and Russia, develop shipping from the continent along the coast of Norway and Russia and further on the Northern Sea Route.

According to project coordinator in Arkhangelsk Valdimir Kharlov, test journeys to northern Russian ports have not had the expected effects because of high port dues:

“Neither in Murmansk nor in Arkhangelsk, that originally were considered by the NMC leadership as alternatives to the port of St. Petersburg have we been able to see any concrete positive examples of a public-private partnership”, Kharlov says according to TV21.

Another fact that hampers the realization of the project is that there have not been established any free economic zones that would give cargo owners tax preferences and could attract the necessary amounts of cargo to the ports of Murmansk and Arkhangelsk, Kharlov says.

But the Northern Maritime Corridor project is still not dead. Coordination of cargo transport between ports in Northern Europe and Russia and administration of the existing infrastructure through regular meetings with the Russian Custom Service and Border Guard Service will still be a prioritized task for NMC”, Vladimir Kharlov said.