Most of Norilsk Nickel's cargo traffic is concentrated in the western part of the Northern Sea Route, but Ravil Nasybullov, the company's logistics department, does not rule out the possibility that commodity flows will be redirected to the East, which will require the use of icebreakers on the route, according to Russian specialized publication portnews reports.
European contractors refuse to work with producers in Russia if the company is not under sanctions.
The Finnish state railway VR said from 2023 onwards that it will stop transporting Russian cargoes. Norilsk Nickel's cargoes are currently transported by rail between the Russian and Finnish divisions. The Russians need to look for alternative logistics routes by 2023 because of these decisions.
In addition to the turbulence in geopolitics, the Russian Arctic has seen an expansion in capacity and the development of shipping along one of the region's largest rivers, the Yenisei.
The growth in shipping is spurred by a series of new industrial projects in the Taymyr Peninsula, several of which are operated by Nornickel.
The company, owned and managed by Vladimir Potanin, now invests up to 26 billions rubles 300 million in the modernization of local infrastructure. There is a new logistics center.
Nikolai Utkin, company representative, said that this will positively affect the local goods delivery process.
He said that it was a new direction, a project on the digitalization of production.
Nornickel has not been sanctioned by the international community, unlike many of Russia's other industrial majors, and shipments of nickel and other precious metals have continued to reach western manufacturers.
Utkin underlines that transportation issues are of crucial importance today.
The organization and construction of efficient logistics chains has always been a priority for us, after all we are in the periphery with complicated conditions for goods transportation and limited time for navigation — it has required smooth and tedious work. Nornickel is working on the construction of a new processing plant in Talnakh, as well as a major renovation program for the city of Norilsk.