China has announced its ambition to extend its One Road, One Belt initiative to the Arctic. Beijing plans to take advantage of the roads open by global warming. The Arctic Road (Northern Sea Road) will shorten routes by 20 days compared to classical roads through the Suez Canal.
“China will work with all countries to build the Silk Arctic Road by developing transport routes in the region”, says a documents published by the Chinese authorities. According to the text, the government will encourage businesses to build infrastructure and offer commercial transport in the region.
China has no access to the Arctic but since 2013 has been an observer in the Arctic Council. One of the interesting projects for China is Russia’s liquefied gas, which is expected to receive about 4 million tonnes of liquefied gas per year.
However, it is clear from the official document of the Chinese authorities that the country is also interested in developing projects for the extraction of oil, gas or other resources, as well as fishing and tourism development. This will be done jointly with the “Arctic” countries, “respecting their traditions and cultural peculiarities”.