Now it’s finally official: the route between Oulu, Luleå and Tromsø will start operating on the 12th of January 2015. The Arctic Airlink is a whole new route connecting Northern university cities in Finland, Sweden and Norway five times per week.
Until now the travelling time by car between Oulu and Tromsø has been about 9,5 hours, which is as long as it takes to fly to the Far East. In the future the flight takes only 40 minutes from Oulu to Luleå and 80 minutes from Luleå to Tromsø.
Ms Pauliina Pikkujämsä, the Head of Marketing and Communications at Business Oulu, believes that the new and fast route is
an opportunity for many actors.
– Arctic Airlink will connect centers for growth in European hot spot area and the most important cities in the North. It is important that we have good connections also between East and West. The new route is an opportunity for tourism and it will enhance co-operation on economic life, research institutes and the Universities in three countries.
The flight connection will also enhance business opportunities in the Arctic area.
– For example for companies in the Oulu region the North will provide opportunities to expand their export business.
Regions behind the Arctic Airlink
The initiative for the connection was taken by the Norrbotten Chamber of Commerce, and Business Oulu started a project in the autumn of 2013 to prepare the route. City of Oulu, Troms County Council and Norrbotten County Council have great faith in the returns that the investments for the Arctic Airlink will pay back for the regions.
All three regions in three countries are committed to financing the route until the end of the summer 2019, each with 1 million SEK per year. In return they get an ownership of 16 per sent from Arctic Link AB. The aim is that after a five year period the route will be entirely funded by the private sector.
Arctic Airlink: www.arcticairlink.com
Text by Johanna Westerlund / Arctic Centre
Photo by Ilkka Jaakola