The Russian Ministry of Industry and Trade has admitted the possibility of further delays in bringing import-substituted versions of Russian passenger aircraft to the market.
“In the next two years, we will replace imported components and details in the Tu-214, Superjet and MC-21 aircraft,” Industry and Trade Minister Denis Manturov said at meeting of the Presidential Council for Strategic Development and National Projects last week.
The development of so-called import-substituted versions of these aircraft became a necessity in 2022, after Western suppliers stopped providing their products to Russia following military conflict in Ukraine.
The Russian government adopted a program for the development of the Russian aviation industry until 2030, which clearly defined the terms and annual volumes of deliveries of import-substituted aircraft, which should gradually replace Western airliners in the fleets of Russian airlines.
According to the program, the first two all-Russian SJ-100 regional jets (formerly known as Superjet-New) were to be delivered in 2023. But at recent Dubai Airshow, Yury Slyusar, head of the United Aircraft Corporation, said that the first deliveries would be postponed until 2024 because of delays in certifying the new Russian PD-8 engine for the regional jet.
About 80% of components are needed to be replaced at Superjet (including engines) with Russian analogs. The partially import-substituted SJ-100 started test flights in August.
The first three Tu-214 narrowbodies were also to be delivered to local airlines in 2023. The government initially positioned this aircraft as fully Russian, but it soon became clear that about 13% of its equipment, including avionics components and escape ladders, needed to be replaced.
In early December, Tupolev managing director Vadim Korolev confirmed that deliveries of new Tu-214s would begin in 2024. He attributed the delays to difficulties in scaling up production from the current annual pace of only two aircraft
Certification and the start of deliveries of an import-substituted version of Russia’s new MC-21 medium-haul aircraft is still scheduled for 2024. However, the first flight of the Russified MC-21-310RUS version has already been shifted from 2023 to 2024. Some 36 imported major systems are needed to be replaced in the aircraft.
The government expects UAC to produce 142 SJ-100s, 270 MC-21-310RUSs and 115 Tu-214s by 2030.
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