Fair Observer published an article titled, “US Falls Behind in the Arctic Arms Race”. The article reads in part as follows:
Many international actors have recognized the growing strategic and commercial importance of the Arctic Circle and its newly opening waterways.
In August 2017, the Russian tanker Christophe de Margerie completed a northern expedition through the Arctic Circle, traveling from Norway to South Korea in the span of 19 days without an icebreaker escort. News of the voyage provided a jolt to an international community that had been anxiously watching what appeared to be the beginnings of an Arctic arms race.
Less than one year later, China made a dramatic entrance into the strategic arena of the Arctic Circle. On January 26, 2018, China’s State Council Information Office released its first white paper on China’s Arctic policy. The document announced plans for an Arctic addition to China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), which spans much of Asia and Europe. The Polar Silk Road aims to enhance cooperation between China and the Arctic nations such as Finland and Russia, while serving to expand Beijing’s reach into many untapped resources and largely ambiguous territorial claims.