Ob – Irtysh River System

Context:

• The above mentioned river system is in news as Kazakhstan proposes to use the Ob-Irtysh river system to gain access to the Arctic.

Background:

• Kazakhstan aims to use the vast Ob-Irtysh river system to gain access the world’s oceans via the Arctic port of Sabetta. Russian President Vladimir Putin and Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev are scheduled to discuss the project
• The landlocked central Asian country is furthering its efforts to develop new transport routes by utilizing Russia’s largest river system. Kazakhstan hopes to benefit from the rapid growth of Arctic shipping and piggyback along these newly developing trade routes. However, it must tread carefully as both Russia and China have vested interests in the region, including the latter’s Belt and Road Initiative.

Changing Global Shipping Routes:

  • Melting of the Arctic will lead to significant changes in the global shipping routes.
  • Among the arctic countries Russia will be a huge beneficiary to trade in the region.
  • China and Russia have been investing hugely in ice breakers and China is developing a nuclear equipped ice breaker.
  • So, Arctic region will play a huge role in the global trade in the days to come.

Source: THE HINDU.

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