April / May 2023
Russian civil aviation is facing significant challenges due a reduction in government subsidies. Despite the upcoming peak holiday season, no such subsidies have been approved for air carriers participating in the summer program, resulting in the Ministry of Transport predicting a rise in air fares of up to 30%. While some Russian propagandists continue to dismiss Western sanctions as ineffective, opposition journalists have noted that record profits reported by some airlines have only been achieved due to substantial and unsustainable government support. As a result of the lack of summer subsidies, several airlines have already cancelled regional flights across the country, and industry experts are warning of impending ruin and bankruptcy for domestic carriers.
The increase in costs is also causing disruption on international routes, with Pegas Touristik predicting a 50% drop in Russian tourists visiting Turkey this summer. This decline is due to escalating costs caused by several Turkish air service providers denying refuelling and other provisions to Russian airlines.
As Russo-Iranian relations continue to strengthen, Tehran has proposed the development of an aviation hub in Dagestan, which would include a facility for the production of spare parts. Representatives from Iranian carrier Pars Golden Sky have expressed their willingness to provide personnel, equipment, and other resources to support the establishment of this hub in recent discussions with Dagestani Prime Minister Abdulmuslim Abdulmuslimov. Iranian ambassador to Russia Kazem Jalali has also offered maintenance services to Russian carriers, with Aeroflot having already turned to Iran for repairs after previous reliance on Hong Kong’s HAECO.
Rosaviatsiya has banned the cleaning of fuel filters for the SaM146 engine, currently used on two variants of the Sukhoi SuperJet, pending formal certification for the procedure by UEC Saturn. Russian maintenance of the SaM146 has been disrupted since the departure of Safran, who developed the engine in partnership with UEC Saturn, from the country. The newly developed PD-8 engine, which will replace the SaM146, is set to undergo certification in May alongside the all-Russian SSJ New variant. According to Rostec head Sergey Chemezov, 20 of these aircraft are set for delivery in 2024. In an effort to russify its existing SSJ fleet, Rossiya Airlines has begun purchasing and installing replacement tyres from domestic manufacturer YaShZ Avia for its.
The Flight Safety Foundation has issued a white paper warning to countries still allowing Russian and Belarussian operators to fly into their territory, warning that this represents a breach of international regulations. In Ukraine, the Office of the Prosecutor General has served Sergey Skuratov, CEO of Ural Airlines, with a notice of suspicion of facilitating the transportation of Russian military personnel, weapons, and ammunition to the Ukrainian border.
Vedomosti – The Ministry of Transport announced a possible increase in the cost of air tickets by 15-30& (Russian)
Atorus – Turkey could miss out on half of the planned number of Russian tourists (Russian)
The Moscow Times – Iran to build spare parts factory in Dagestan (Russian)
iXBT – SSJ-100 planes begin change to Russian tyres (Russian)
Vot-tak – Russian propagandists talk about the failure of Western sanctions in aviation, why they are wrong (Russian)
Aviation Week – Russian airlines contend with worsening spare parts shortage (English)
Korrespondent – Prosecutor general office serves Ural head with notice of suspicion (Russian)
NEWS.RU – Rostransnadzor has predicted ruin for airlines (Russian)
EastRussia – Chemezov: 20 SuperJets to be delivered in 2024 (Russian)
KO – Iran has declared readiness to take over the maintenance of Russian aircraft (Russian)