Ural Airlines and S7 Airlines have reached a settlement over 63 foreign-owned aircraft that were left stuck in Russia when it commenced its invasion of Ukraine in 2022.
According to a statement by S7 Airlines on December 22, 2023, the carrier completed a deal with three lessors for a total of 45 medium-haul aircraft.
The agreement with AerCap, ALC and SMBC Aviation Capital was reached with the participation of the Russian insurance company NSK.
Under the terms of the settlement, the lessors agreed to cease claims against S7 under insurance policies and lease agreements.
“S7 Airlines continues negotiations to resolve aircraft relations with other foreign lessors of the airline,” S7 declared in a statement.
In an SEC filing, AerCap released more details about its own agreement with S7 Airlines and Ural Airlines.
The Irish-based lessor said the settlement with S7 Airlines was for 29 aircraft and four spare engines.
AerCap said an agreement for 18 aircraft and one spare engine had also been reached with Ural Airlines.
Both transactions with the Russian airlines were approved by the US Department of Commerce and the US Department of the Treasury.
AerCap’s settlement with the two airlines was signed for approximately $572 million and was approved by the US Department of Commerce and the US Department of the Treasury.
News of the settlements were reported in Russian news outlets, which claimed that Ural Airlines’ agreement with AerCap was for Airbus jets. However, Russian publications claimed the deal was in fact for 19 Airbus planes.
“In accordance with the agreements reached, the lessors ceased their claims against the Russian parties both under insurance policies issued by Russian insurance companies and under leasing agreements concluded by Ural Airlines with the AerCap group and legal entities managed by the AerCap group,” Ural Airlines announced in a statement.
According to Russian news websites, the newly acquired jets should now be able to fly freely outside Russia without fear of being impounded.
Subsequently, Ural Airlines has announced that it will resume flights to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) as of December 27, 2023.
In May 2022, the European Parliament passed a resolution demanding Russia returns over 400 “stolen” aircraft leased from foreign companies.