AKKO has been in business more than a decade and is based at Moscow Sheremetyevo Airport. The company has performed interior work on more than 150 passenger and business jets, including Aeroflot and the airline’s VIP charter division, Aeroflot-Plus.
A little more than a decade after perestroika, interior completion and refurbishment companies in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) are flexing some muscle and looking to the West for partners and clients as demand levels off in their home markets.Business aviation in the CIS is a relatively young phenomenon, with a history going back barely seven years.
Despite signs of revival last year, when traffic rose by 6- to 8 percent, the Russian regional air transport system remains in dire straits. Lack of appreciable demand in the market, aging fleets and the absence of reasonably priced capital in the country’s banking sector have conspired to frustrate recent efforts to move the industry out of its doldrums.
While the Russian regional airline system struggles to realize some semblance of Western-style development, the former Soviet satellite state of Ukraine has assumed a leading position in the fleet renovation efforts under way throughout the former Soviet Union.
The airline that operated the Yakovlev Yak-40 regional jet that crashed on approach to Tashkent Airport on January 13 was banned from using UK airspace just a week before the accident. Uzbekistan Airways is on a list of foreign carriers Britain has banned from its airspace due to concerns over the safety or safety-monitoring of airlines by their host countries. The crash killed all 37 passengers and crew on board.
After several delays, Siberian regional airline UTAir finally expects to begin flying passengers aboard a pair of Avions de Transport Regional ATR 42-300s this month, marking the first use of Western-built turboprops in scheduled airline service in Russia.