- September 30, 2008, 4:54 AM
Eclipse Aviation announced on September 23 that the Russian state bank Vnesheconombank (VEB) supervisory board, chaired by Russian prime minister Vladimir Putin, has approved the construction of a factory in Ulyanovsk, Russia, to assemble Eclipse 500s for the European and Russian markets. VEB “expects” to finance the $205 million project, though this funding is separate from the reported $200 million investment that Eclipse is seeking to continue operations. According to Eclipse, export of the Eclipse 500 components to Russia complies with U.S. and Canadian export regulations. The very light jet manufacturer plans to open the plant in 2010 and assemble up to 800 Eclipse 500s per year there. However, deliveries from this plant will require EASA certification, which the company has not yet attained.