Passage through northern shipping routes and Arctic waters has received a boost following the doubling of the connectivity speed of the Iridium Certus™ network. This was reported by maritime communications specialist IEC Telecom from Norway on 23 March.
As the shortest sea route between Europe and the Asia-Pacific region, the Northern Sea Route holds immense potential to compete with conventional trade passages. There has been a significant increase in maritime traffic across the main transport corridors in the Arctic, Northern Sea Route in the Russian Federation, the Northwest Passage in Canada as well as the Arctic Bridge from Canada to Europe. It has been reported that in the Canadian Arctic, traffic tripled between 1990 and 2015. Moreover, cargo volume in the Northern Sea Route increased by 40% between 2016 and 2017.