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17 Aug, 2007 06:44

United Aircraft Corporation targets global markets

More than 700 Russian and foreign companies are expected to showcase their latest technologies at MAKS aviation show next week. Among them, Russia's United Aircraft Corporation. It announced ambitious expansion plans that will help it compete on the inter

United Aircraft Corporation is a holding created early last year by President Putin, which combines the country's top aircraft makers including Sukhoi and Ilyushin. This week it announced plans to build 4,500 aircraft worth $US 250 BLN within the next two decades – most of them, civilian jets. The plan will require about $US 250 MLN worth of state investment annually.

“Until recently Russia could hardly afford investing in aerospace projects. Now the tide is turning. We face a very ambitious task: we have to return to the markets which the Soviet Union and Russia lost in previous decades and win 5% to 10% of the international civil aircraft market,” suggests Oleg Panteleev, aviaport.ru Editor-In-Chief.

Sukhoi's ambitious Superjet-100 project may help Russia gain a foothold on that market, but the industry is anticipating something bigger and better – the MS-21 civilian jet. The plane is being jointly developed by aircraft makers Ilyushin, Tupolev and Yakovlev and will compete in price and efficiency with international giants Boeing and Airbus.

“We stopped following the trend of the Russian market only, now we are targeting the global market. We have to be competitive there and we have to sell there. Equipment sold in Russia should not be different from equipment sold abroad,” says Boris Alyoshin, Head of Federal industrial agency.

The United Aircraft Corporation expects next week's show to bring in deals worth more than the $US 1 BLN from France's Le Bourget, leading to a future where Russia's jet makers can match their European counterparts.