(PresidentialWire.com)- After Western airline manufacturers blocked shipments of replacement parts and aircraft companies cancel all their contracts with Russian airlines as of March 28, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a new law that will see Western-built planes leased from international companies seized at Russian airports.
Putin signed the law on Monday, requiring all foreign jets arriving at Russian airports to be added to the country’s aircraft register, scheduled for maintenance, and then redeployed on domestic routes as the Russian airline industry struggles.
Russia faces difficult years ahead, with most of the country’s planes being built in the West and a total block on the shipping of replacement parts to the country. It means that within the next six months to a year, Russian airline companies will not be able to perform necessary maintenance to ensure that passengers jets remain safe. The island of Bermuda also revoked the airworthiness certifications for around 700 aircraft leased by Russian companies.
The planes seized by Russia may be used for domestic flights for now, but they may also be used for spare parts. With Airbus and Boeing unable to send specific parts to Russia, airlines and engineers may be required to purchase after-market parts from China – which may not be built to the same high standards as products that come from the West. Engineers may also break down Western planes and use them for parts – but this strategy is not only risky, but it’s also not sustainable.
Over the next year, Russia will be faced with difficult decisions. Not only will passengers potentially be put at risk, but the entirety of Russia’s fleet of planes may need to be replaced by aircraft built in Russia or another country that has not levied sanctions against them. It will be extremely costly, and the Russian airline industry could be effectively shut down for substantial periods of time.
Unless, of course, the West lifts sanctions against Russia…which doesn’t seem likely right now.