Sheremetyevo to double its take-off and landing fees

Sheremetyevo Sheremetyevo commits to the overhaul of runways and taxiways, as well as the construction of several new facilities (SVO)

Moscow’s Sheremetyevo, Russia’s largest airport, is planning to increase its take-off and landing charges from January 1, 2019. The resultant revenue increase will be spent on upgrading the airport’s infrastructure, Vladimir Tasun, the head of Russia’s Air Transport Operators Association, explained at the prestigious Wings of the Future air transport forum, recently held in Moscow by Russian Aviation Insider’s sister company ATO Events.

Sheremetyevo (SVO) currently charges 222.91 roubles-per-tonne of an aircraft’s MTOW. Starting from January 1 next year an investment component of 220.8 roubles will be added to the fees, resulting in a total of 443.71 roubles (US$6.8). The operators have already been officially notified of the increase.

The airport believes that the extra costs will not over burden the airlines because the additional cost per passenger will add only 75-81 roubles for narrow-bodies like the Airbus A320 and between 105 and 143 roubles for wide-bodies such as the Boeing 777. This effectively translates to a one per cent increase in average economy class fares.

The proposed change of fees is introduced as a result of the concession agreement signed, according to which the airport commits to the overhaul of runways and taxiways, as well as the construction of several new facilities, including the western apron adjacent to the third runway. As previously announced, development of the concession agreement infrastructure will be financed through the investment component of the service fees for take-offs, landings and parking.

The measure provides a solution to the shortage of federal budget funds, which need to be allocated for such state-owned aerodrome infrastructure construction and renovation projects.

In the Sheremetyevo example, the government had reportedly allocated 120 billion rubles in the timeframe 2001 and 2016 for the purpose, but additional funding is required for the completion of the construction of the third runway project and, once it becomes operational, the renovation of one of the existing active runways.

The limitations and unpredictability of state financing has created a serious and disturbing restriction to the hub airport’s business development plans. This unparalleled concession, which replaces the existing renting mechanism, provides the airport’s managing company with the much-needed flexibility and predictability to expand its runway capacity in line with the anticipated growth of its passenger service capabilities.

Similar concession agreements are being planned for Moscow’s other airports of Vnukovo (VKO) and Domodedovo (DME).

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