RDIF, Nornickel, Rosatom and DP World to look into joint development of the Northern Sea Route

Press release, 06.06.2019

Saint-Petersburg, June 6, 2019 - The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), Russia’s sovereign wealth fund, the Rosatom State Corporation acting as the Northern Sea Route infrastructure operator, Nornickel, the global leader in palladium and high grade nickel production, and DP World, a major global port operator, have agreed to pursue a joint project for integrated development of the Northern Sea Route (NSR). The four-party declaration of intent was signed on 6 June 2019 on the sidelines of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.

The DOI is not legally binding and contemplates a comprehensive study of the best available commercial options for using the Northern Sea Route. The parties will consider a strategic partnership through a joint venture to develop transit freight transportation on the NSR. The project will first and foremost seek to boost freight traffic on the NSR and across the Russian Arctic. 

The document was signed by Kirill Dmitriev, CEO of RDIF, Vladimir Potanin, President of Nornickel, Alexey Likhachev, CEO of Rosatom, and Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Group Chairman and CEO of DP World.

The first project stage will see the development of a strategy to improve the NSR utilisation efficiency while also exploring ways to unlock its transit transportation potential. The partners will particularly look into the options to launch liner shipping of containerised and other commodity cargoes via the Northern Sea Route. They will also assess the financing required to design and build additional ice-class vessels and icebreakers, and the port infrastructure. Another pivotal area is protecting the environment and ensuring safety of maritime transportation on the NSR.

Project participants have all the necessary expertise to deliver on the project objectives. The Russian Direct Investment Fund has extensive opportunities to attract foreign capital into major Russian projects. Rosatom is the authorised infrastructure operator of the Northern Sea Route and the owner of the world’s only nuclear icebreaker fleet. Nornickel, whose production facilities are located in the Far North, has distilled many years of experience and knowledge in the NSR logistics. The company hauls freights for its own needs, while also being a key shipper of cargoes to the Russian Arctic. DP World is a major global port operator and a world leader in global supply chain solutions, specialising in cargo logistics, port terminal operations and freight transportation.

The parties agreed to set up a joint working group to conduct a six-month analysis and prepare a project feasibility study.


Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) is Russia's sovereign wealth fund established in 2011 to make equity co-investments, primarily in Russia, alongside reputable international financial and strategic investors. RDIF acts as a catalyst for direct investment in the Russian economy. RDIF’s management company is based in Moscow. Currently, RDIF has experience of the successful joint implementation of more than 70 projects with foreign partners totaling more than RUB 1.5tn and covering 95% of the regions of the Russian Federation. RDIF portfolio companies employ more than 700,000 people and generate revenues which equate to more than 5% of Russia’s GDP. RDIF established joint strategic partnerships with leading international co-investors from more than 15 countries that total more than $40bn. Further information can be found at rdif.ru

For additional information contact:

Arseniy Palagin                                     
Russian Direct Investment Fund              
Press Secretary                                        
Tel: +7 495 644 34 14, ext. 2395
Mobile: +7 916 110 31 41
E-mail: arseniy.palagin@rdif.ru