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Russian state-owned airline Aeroflot is stripping parts from working planes because of a spares shortage, report says

Business Insider India logo Business Insider India 09-08-2022 Stephen Jones
Russian state-owned airline Aeroflot is stripping parts from working planes because of a spares shortage, report says © Media_works/Shutterstock Russian state-owned airline Aeroflot is stripping parts from working planes because of a spares shortage, report says
  • Russian airlines have begun stripping aircraft for spares amid a parts shortage, Reuters reported.
  • State-owned Aeroflot is stripping parts from some Boeing and Airbus jets, a source told Reuters.

Russian state-owned airline Aeroflot has begun stripping parts from working aircraft to mitigate a shortage of spares caused by Western sanctions, Reuters reported.

At least one nearly-new Airbus A350 and a Russian-made Sukhoi Superjet 100, as well as a couple Boeing 737s and Airbus A320s, are among the planes being cannibalized, a source told the news agency.

Russian carriers have seen their access to spare parts restricted by Western sanctions introduced in the wake of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, which is hampering their ability to service their aircraft.

Aeroflot is heavily reliant on Western-made Airbus and Boeing planes but is barred from buying parts on international markets. It's among several airlines that have started stripping spares from working aircraft, Reuters reported, citing four unnamed people close to the matter.

Aeroflot did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment.

Aeroflot's fleet features 59 Boeing planes, including 777s and 737s, and 119 Airbus models, including seven A350s and 64 A320s, according to figures on its website. The airline is currently operating five Sukhoi Superjet 100s and has another 100 on order to 2026.

In June, the Kremlin advised airlines to use parts from their own aircraft to maintain foreign-built jets with the aim of keeping these planes flying until at least 2025.

Reuters analysis of FlightRadar data suggests as many as 50 Aeroflot planes have been grounded since late July.

Analysts have warned that sanctions could soon impact the Russian aviation industry's ability to operate.

In June, Patrick Ky, executive director of the European Union Aviation Safety Agency, warned that Russia may have to start cannibalizing jets to keep operating. "This is very unsafe," Ky told Reuters at the time.

Under the Russian government's aviation development plan, it hopes to replace its commercial fleet with as many as 1,000 Russian-made aircraft by 2030, Kommersant reported.

In March, Russian President Vladimir Putin changed a law that enabled Russian operators to take control of hundreds of leased aircraft.

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