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Aeroflot Billing Sukhoi for Downtime

According to reports, Sukhoi gave a significant discount to the national carrier for being the first SuperJet buyer. Vladimir Filonov

Aeroflot, the first buyer of the Sukhoi SuperJet, is receiving compensation from the liner’s manufacturer, Sukhoi Civil Aircraft, for losses incurred due to downtime resulting from technical problems with the aircraft.

“At a minimum, Aeroflot is not suffering direct losses from the planes’ downtime. They are being paid to the airline by the manufacturer,” a source close to the carrier said. This was confirmed by a source close to Sukhoi.

The sources did not specify the amount of compensation.

On Monday, Aeroflot officials reported to the Federal Air Transportation Agency on its operation of the six SSJ aircraft it added to its fleet. Over the past several months the planes have flown a third less than planned — just 2,381 hours.

The downtime was due to technical problems and late delivery of spare parts, said Konstantin Mokhna, deputy chief engineer at Aeroflot’s aircraft maintenance department.

The world’s leading aircraft makers, Boeing and Airbus, do not compensate airlines for losses suffered from downtime of planes, even when introducing new aircraft.

“Often carriers, at the stage of contract signing, opt for the aircraft operating support package, which costs hundreds of thousands of dollars per year,” one source said.

Compensation for downtime was far from the last concession Sukhoi gave to the national carrier.

The airline has ordered a total of 30 planes at a price of $19 million each — a discount of 38 percent of the catalog price of $31 million.

Sukhoi has also provided free engineering services, technical support, training for flight instructors and provided a trainer for their use, a source close to the aircraft maker said.

All of these concessions are worth tens of millions of dollars, a source familiar with the matter said.

n Sheremetyevo International Airport served 1.6 million travelers last month, a 22.7 percent year-on-year increase, Sheremetyevo said in a statement, Interfax reported.

Passenger flow on international flights increased 19.4 percent to 1 million people; on domestic flights growth was at 28.4 percent to 614,000.

The most popular destinations outside Russia during the past two months were Paris, Istanbul, Hurghada, Sharm el-Sheikh, Prague, Kiev, Bangkok, Beijing, Amsterdam and Rome. The favored destinations within Russia were St. Petersburg, Krasnodar, Yekaterinburg, Sochi, Rostov-on-Don, Vladivostok, Novosibirsk and Kaliningrad.

Sheremetyevo served 22.5 million passengers last year, a 16.7 percent increase from the year before.

There were 33,494 takeoffs and landings at Sheremetyevo during the first two months of this year, which was 12.2 percent more than in the same period of last year. The figure for February alone was 16,052, up 15.8 percent.

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