Goods turnover in the Murmansk port is down more than 50% since 2010. Photo: Thomas Nilsen

Murmansk shipping continues decline

The Port of Murmansk has one of its weakest years in the whole post-Soviet period.
December 01, 2015

In five years, goods turnover at Russia’s leading Arctic port has dropped by more than 50 percent. The port, a cornerstone infrastructure object in Murmansk Oblast, in the first ten months of 2015 had a 3,8 percent decline compared with the same period 2014, Portnews.ru reports.

That result brings goods turnover in the regional port to the lowest level in 13 years. In year 2002, the port handled 21,5 million tons, figures from Patchwork Barents shows. In 2015, the volume is likely to drop to below 22 million tons.

Meanwhile, in year 2010 goods turnover at the port exceeded 56 million tons, Patchwork Barents informs.

Paradoxically, the weak results comes as the Arctic port celebrates its 100-year anniversary. With great bravour, the port in early September this year assembled distinguished guest for a great city party.

”As we cross the 100-years border, we enter new era, which places in front of us new responsibilities”, port General Director Alekandr Masko said in a public speech. ”The port will always respond to the challenges of the ruling times”, he added, a press release from the port reads.

Also in the neighboring port of Arkhangelsk the port is struggling with shipping decline. Results in the first 10 months of the year were 2,8 percent down year-on-year from 2014, Portnews informs. In the Russian north, only the port oil terminal of Varandey on the Nenets coast had an increase in the period (11%).

The lion’s share of the goods handled in the Murmansk port is coal. However, the port is also a crucial logistics hub for the powerful industrial companies in the Kola Peninsula which need out-shipments of minerals and ores like nickel and apatite.

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