The number of civil airplanes operating in Russia may reduce by several times, Alexander Zubarov, the chairman of the board of the Aeroflot airlines, announced at a round-table meeting of the Russian Federation Council. At present, the total amount of long-haul airplanes in Russia is 1,500.
According to Zubarov, the reason for possible reduction is low air traffic. Russian airlines transport a total of 27m passengers a year, which is about 3 percent of the total population. He also mentioned that the main deterrent for the development of civil aviation in Russia was the fact that airlines had too many out-of-date aircraft. Moreover, the bulk of Russian airlines do not have their own system of itineraries, and the daily average flight time is as little as 5.5 hours.
Zubarov is of the opinion that growth in passenger traffic requires state support in the financial leasing sector.