Northern Sea Route – Impact on Global Trade

Organized by the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) 13. September 2017

International trade continues to define the prosperity of national economies and even the development of cultures. Conversely, economic growth enhances the global trade, motivates the tariff reduction and other trade liberalization policies. About 80% of global trade relies on the maritime transport.


Saturday, October 14, 16:00 - 17:30

Once the Northern Sea Route (NSR) becomes a viable transportation corridor to connect Europe and Asia, it may significantly re-shape the existing trade flows, which will also eventually have an impact on the political layout worldwide. To become operational on a large scale, the NSR requires massive investments, which may come from emerging Asian economies. This session will present and discusses a research project aimed at investigating the effects of an enhanced NSR onto the global trade under market, geo-political and climate uncertainty. The project intends to analyze plausible pathways, identify winners and losers, and suggest scenarios maximizing the benefits for as many interested parties as possible.


  • Elena Rovenskaya, Director, Advanced Systems Analysis (ASA) Program, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, IIASA and
  • Michael Obersteiner, Program Director of the Ecosystems Services and Management (ESM) Program, Ecosystem Services and Management Program, IIASA: Northern Sea Route - A Game Changer for Global Trade?
  • Lawson W. Brigham, Distinguished Faculty, University of Alaska Fairbanks: The NSR: Gateway to Global Markets
  • Dmitry Yumashev, Senior Research Associate, Pentland Centre for Sustainability in Business of the Lancaster University, and Cambridge Centre for Climate Change Mitigation Research, University of Cambridge: Towards a Balanced View of Arctic Shipping: Estimating Economic Impacts of Emissions from Increased Traffic on the Northern Sea Route
  • Natsuhiko Otsuka, Professor, Arctic Research Center, Hokkaido University: Possibility and issues of liner shipping via the Northern Sea Route
  • Liisa Kauppila, Ph.D. Candidate, University of Turku and Rasmus Gjedssø Bertelsen, Professor, University of Tromsø – The Arctic University of Norway,: China-Arctic Maritime and Energy Systems in the Making: Functional Regionalisation in the High North
  • Tero Vauraste, President and Chief Executive Officer, Arctia Ltd., Chair of Arctic Economic Council: Business Perspective