Russia seizes Western-built jetliners as sanctions block parts, maintenance and support

Russian President Vladimir Putin chairs a meeting with government officials via teleconference in Moscow, Thursday, March 10, 2022Mikhail Klimentyev, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP, File

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a law authorizing the seizure of hundreds of Western-built planes operated by Russian airlines.

  • The planes belong to aircraft lessors, who canceled contracts following sanctions against Russia.

  • The seizure could pose a risk to passengers as the planes may not receive proper maintenance repairs due to the sanctions.

On Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law that will allow Russian airlines to take control of hundreds of Western-built planes leased from international companies, Russian news agency TASS reported. by The Wall Street Journal.

The jets will be added to the country’s aircraft registry and deployed on domestic routes, according to Reuters. The news comes on the heels of the island of Bermuda revokes certificates of airworthiness for more than 700 leased planes in Russia, which entered into force on Saturday evening.

The battle between Russia and donors has been going on since the February 24 invasion of Ukraine, with the EU forcing aircraft leasing companies to cancel their contracts with Russian airlines by March 28which means that these foreign planes must be returned to their owners.

However, Russian authorities and airlines have made it difficult, including closing airspace and banning most international flights.

Meanwhile, EU and US sanctions cut off Russian airlines from aircraft makers Airbus and Boeing, which produced the bulk of leased planes. This means that the two Western companies cannot provide support in the form of maintenance, spare parts or updates for the complex machines, which could pose a risk to passengers and airline staff, noted. the Wall Street Journal.

Since Boeing and Airbus are prohibited from shipping spare parts to Russia, this could force airlines to turn to risky alternatives, such as buying uncertified supplies from China or cannibalize aircraft parts on the groundincluding backer jets.

According to aviation consultancy Ishka, $10 billion worth of planes are blocked in Russia.

“Lenders may end up having to cancel,” Nick Cunningham, analyst at Agency Partners, told Bloomberg.

Read the original article at Business Intern

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