Bizjet Traffic On Upswing in St. Petersburg

 - September 11, 2017, 11:19 AM

The Pulkovo-3 FBO in St. Petersburg experienced traffic growth in 2016, despite an overall downward trend of business aircraft flights in the largest cities in Russia in recent years. In 2016, 7,598 business jet flights operated at the St. Petersburg FBO, compared with 7,191 in 2015.

According to data from by the Russian United Business Aviation Association (RUBAA), released on Wednesday at the Business Aviation Forum 2017 in Moscow, the number of business jet flights transiting through FBOs in the seven largest Russian cities decreased from 50,095 in 2014 to 41,415 in 2016.

The Pulkovo-3 results also were below those of 2014—when the traffic reached an all-time-high at 7,888 flights—but the preliminary data available for the first half of 2017 indicates that this FBO is likely to exceed “the pre-crisis levels.” From January to June this year, the number of flights totaled 3,933 and is likely to exceed 8,000 by year-end, according to RUBAA.

Association chairman Alexander Kuleshov even called Pulkovo-3 “an island of stability,” as it fared better than FBOs in Moscow, Rostov-upon-Don, Ekaterinburg, Samara, Nizhny Novgorod and Sochi.

Figures available from RUBAA indicate that the business aviation traffic via Pulkovo-3 was slightly higher the 2014 levels in January, February, March and April. At the summer peak in July, when the business community flocks to St. Petersburg for the International Economic Forum attended by President Putin and his ministers, business jet flights soared above 1,000, which was the case again this year.

The Business Aviation Forum 2017 provided a platform to announce the planned opening of an FBO in the airport of Simferopol (SIP/UKFF), the largest city in the Crimean peninsula. It will supplement the existing so-called Terminal D, which is a hall serving government officials and at times also available for business travelers. Design of the new FBO is based on Vnukovo-3 and Pulkovo-3. The opening is scheduled for April 2018.