Aeroflot Airlines plans to start the implementation of its fleet modernization plan by transferring the whole Sukhoi SuperJet SSJ100 aircraft fleet to its subsidiary Rossiya Airlines. The first five regional jets reportedly are expected to be delivered by the end of 2020.
Currently operating a total of 54 Sukhoi SuperJet SSJ100 planes, Aeroflot would hand over all the jets to Rossiya while converting its fleet to Airbus aircraft, sources familiar with the decision told local media. Aeroflot reportedly expects to transfer the first 5 SSJ100 jets by the end of 2020 while 44 more aircraft should be delivered in 2021. The last 10 planes are scheduled to be handed over to Rossiya in 2022, assured the sources.
Earlier in August 2020, Rossiya Airlines confirmed it was considering the expansion of its future SSJ100 jet fleet up to 120 aircraft soon after receiving former Aeroflot planes in 2022. However, the air carrier did not specify which part of future SSJ100 jet deliveries would be leased and which of them would be added to the fleet straight from the manufacturer’s assembly line of the Irkutsk Aviation Plant.
The transfer of the whole Russian-made aircraft fleet to Rossiya follows Aeroflot Group’s long-term development strategy plan which will be implemented by 2028. In July 2020, Vitaly Savelyev, the former CEO of Aeroflot Group, said that according to the plan, Rossiya Airlines would operate as many as 250 planes of which 235 would be Russian-made aircraft, including 150 Superjet 100s and 85 MC-21 planes.
This means that former Aeroflot’s order for 95 SSJ100s as well as 50 MC-21 aircraft would also be delivered to Rossiya Airlines. Meanwhile, the former CEO outlined that the airline would operate only 15 foreign jets, most likely, Boeing 777 aircraft.
Following the group’s development plan, Pulkovo Airport (LED) at St. Petersburg, which is the main Rossiya Airlines hub, would be boosted with an aim to assign Rossiya for serving regional domestic operations and create the market for Russia-made planes.