Yamal LNG announced that the first Arc7 ice-class LNG tanker “Christophe de Margerie” has entered the Kara Sea and has started its first LNG cargo voyage through the Northern Sea Route (NSR). The subleased tanker will go through the NSR without the escort of icebreakers and will deliver LNG from Norway to South Korea in 15 days.
Yamal LNG claims that Christophe de Margerie is the first out of 15 tankers, which are being specifically built for the Yamal LNG project. In the winter navigation season of 2016-2017, the Arc7 ice-class tanker successfully passed a series of ice tests.
The LNG tanker may be used for year-round navigation without the escort of icebreakers through the NSR towards Western direction and for summer season navigation towards Eastern direction.
The utilization of the route from Europe to Eastern and South-Eastern Asia through the NSR halves the transportation time to market compared to the traditional route.
The start of LNG shipments through the NSR with the ARC7 ice-class tanker will help to increase cargo turnovers and develop navigation in Arctic Ocean.
Currently, the navigation routes for high-tonnage ships through the NSR have already being used and tested, providing security and efficiency of navigation.