Russian Volga-Dneper airline and Ukrainian Antonov Bureau need each other


November 6, 2017 – Fort Russ News –

–, translated by Tom Winter –

Shown: the Antonov 225, only one in existence, moneymaker for the firm on lease-outs.
Antonov has not made an airplane in two years.
The Antonov 124, Ruslan

The cooperation of Russia and Ukraine in the sphere of civil aviation could resume in part.

The Ukrainian enterprise Antonov is in talks with the Russian airline Volga-Dnepr about the possible extension of the airworthiness of the An-124-100 Ruslan aircraft.

Volga-Dnepr owns a fleet of 12 Ruslans, while Antonov owns the type certificate for these aircraft developed in Soviet times. According to the documents, the procedure for extending the service life should be made every 4,000 flight hours. When relations between Moscow and Kiev deteriorated, Antonov refused to extend the airworthiness of the aircraft.

The return to the agreements will bring benefits to both sides, writes Kommersant. The Ukrainian company has not produced a single aircraft in the last two years, the extension of the airworthiness will be paid for, in addition, Antonov can count on receiving documentation from the Ilyushin Design Bureau to extend the service life of IL-76MD aircraft.

Modest prospects

Most likely, the parties will find a common language, all the more so since  Antonov needs money, and Dnipro needs planes that will fly in accord with all international rules, says Andrei Kramarenko, a leading expert at the Institute of Transport Economics and Transport Policy of the Higher School of Economics.

Volga-Dnepr is lobbying for this convergence, trying to convey that politics should not affect the economy, when the players themselves can agree.

The expert assesses the present situation and prospects of the Ukrainian manufacturer as rather modest.

“In my opinion, in the zero years Antonov was the most capable design bureau in the post-Soviet space. They tried to do things, did new models, new versions of these models – both a cargo and a tanker plane, two modifications of  passenger regional planes. But first of all, in money and markets in itself, the Ukrainian market for the supply of aircraft is practically zero,” said Kramarenko ….
Translator comment: If parts of an aircraft are defined as “life limited,” the aircraft is not legal to fly once past the specified limits. Adjustments to extend the limits, e.g by replacement with newer, more modern parts, generally require a supplemental type certificate.

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