industry faces a bright future if it can overcome the twin challenges of modernisation and widespread Russian aviation industry consolidation.
With the air transport industry currently undergoing a profound transformation whereby a marked shrinkage of passenger numbers is reflected in a steady decline in aircraft fleet sizes, MRO specialists are increasingly looking to international markets for future growth opportunities.
Officially collected data for Q3 2016 illustrates that Russian aviation industry consolidation has continued. Statistics for January-September 2015 show that the first five, 15 and 35 Russian airlines then controlled 52, 71 and 83 per cent respectively of overall passenger traffic. These shares had increased to 67, 90 and 99 per cent by the same period in 2016.
Furthermore, in the 2014-2015 period, the fleet size of Russian passenger carriers shrank significantly, according to the 2016 ATO Sourcebook. The number of long-range aircraft in Russia decreased by 32 units, and numbers of medium-haul and regional airplanes dropped by 109 and 38 respectively.
There does appear to be light at the end of the tunnel, observers note. Signs that the Russian civil aviation sector is starting to perk up are indicated by the progress of the consolidation of Rossiya Airlines, VIM-Avia’s fleet actively growing, such carriers as Aeroflot, Ural Airlines, Azur Air and Yakutia increasing their capacities, with S7 Airlines, NordWind Airlines and Royal Flight all expecting to do the same in the near future.