Arctic sea route 'will not be commercially viable in next 10 to 15 years'

Melting ice has paved the way for vessels to sail via the Arctic route.
Melting ice has paved the way for vessels to sail via the Arctic route.PHOTO: AFP

The Northern Sea (Arctic) Route could effectively halve the sailing distance between the Far East and Europe but is unlikely to become commercially viable in the foreseeable future, said global maritime expert Koji Sekimizu.

He told The Straits Times during an interview on Monday: "We don't know yet if the Arctic will become a major shipping route, but (even if it does), I don't expect that it will happen in the foreseeable future, not in the next 10 to 15 years at least."

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 26, 2018, with the headline 'Arctic sea route 'will not be commercially viable in next 10 to 15 years''. Print Edition | Subscribe