New domestic RRJ Airplanes to fly by 2007

The Russian regional jet (RRJ) project, which calls for the construction of new domestic airplanes, is in the final stages of development, said a spokesperson for Sukhoi Civilian Airplanes company today. According to plans, in the spring of 2004 project participants and Financial Leasing Company (FLC) will conclude agreements for the delivery of airliners to air companies. Deliveries of the new domestic airplanes are expected to begin in the first quarter of 2007.

FLC Director Yevgeny Zaritsky said the company intends to propose airplanes of the RRJ type under the conditions of financial and operational leasing. 'This will help airlines save by not requiring large financial resources directly for the purchase of aviation technology, and pay for leasing from profits of the airlines,' he said.

The RRJ project for the creation of a family of regional airplanes with a seating capacity of 60-98 persons is being undertaken by Sukhoi Civilian Airplanes jointly with US company Boeing and French engine-builder Snecma. The project is necessary to refurbish a group of aging TU-134 and YAK-40 airplanes. At the present time project participants are looking over possible configurations and characteristics of the airplane. FLC is participating as the leading licensing company for aviation technology.

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