The Norwegian government is investing NOK 60 million to improve the efficiency of the seaward approach to the Port of Tromsø. This measure will particularly benefit cruise traffic as it will allow all large ships to sail through the strait of Kvalsundet north of Tromsø.
This route is currently only available to smaller ships and the largest ships are required to sail far north of Tromsø before starting the actual approach to Tromsø. When the shipping lane is expanded, it will be 150 m wide and 12 m deep. This will mean that even the largest cruise ships will be able to take advantage of this route instead of sailing via the detour further north. This will lead to significant savings in both time and fuel consumption.
The Norwegian government will initially spend NOK 60 million on the expansion. The total cost of the project will be NOK 73 million. “This is not a project that will be completed in the space of a year. It will take time. Consequently, the funding will come in several stages,” the State Secretary of the Ministry of Transport and Communications, Tom Cato Karlsen, explained to the local newspaper in Tromsø. The detour currently used by the larger ships takes a lot of time. We are talking about 85 nautical miles. Cruise traffic is very important to Tromsø so heavy investment is being made to facilitate cruise tourism.