Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister ‘not aware’ of total aircraft cannibalization

Dismanted aircraft in Russia
Evgenii Panov / Shutterstock

The cannibalization of airplane parts, fueled by international sanctions against Russia, is more of a “common practice” than a massive trend within the country’s aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) sector, according to Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Trade and Industry Denis Manturov.

Speaking to Vedomosti on December 22, 2022, Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister confirmed that local airlines have been stripping some of their planes as an effective short-term solution to secure spare parts. This is due to Russia not currently being able to obtain aircraft parts or undergo maintenance in foreign countries because of Western sanctions.

However, the minister claimed that he is “not aware of [the total aircraft cannibalization, ed.-] cases” happening at present instead.

“Temporary rearrangement of spare parts from one aircraft to another for the prompt restoration of airworthiness was, is, and will be a common practice. But if we are talking about the total cannibalism of our [planes, ed.-], then I am not aware of such cases now,” the minister was quoted as saying.

Manturov explained that even though “everything is being done to prevent [total cannibalization, ed.-] from happening,” further development of the country’s aviation industry will depend on how intensively planes will be operating and “how timely” it will be that they can be serviced.

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