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The Korea Times cites industry sources saying the company is planning to use 2,500 to 3,500 TEU ships, possibly with ice-breaking support provided by Russia, on the Arctic route. The move could cut shipping times from South Korea to Europe to 30 days, compared to the 40-day voyage through the Indian Ocean and Suez Canal.
According to the Korea Times, Korean President Moon Jae-in discussed enhanced Arctic cooperation with Russia’s Vladimir Putin during the recent G20 summit in Germany.
LNG Carrier Transit to South Korea
The first container ship transit of the Northern Sea Route was made in 2013 by COSCO's Yong Sheng. Meanwhile, the route is continuing to gain traction in other shipping sectors. The LNG tanker Christophe de Margerie has just completed its first voyage of the Northern Sea Route in a record time of 6.5 days. In total it took 22 days for the LNG tanker to sail from Norway to South Korea.
The Christophe de Margerie was built by the order of Sovcomflot to provide year-round transportation for LNG in the Kara Sea and Gulf of Ob for the Yamal LNG project.
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