Category Archives: Aviation in the press

The long-suffering Yamal Airlines: air conflict history between Russia and Tajikistan

Yamal Airlines, Russia, has repeatedly lost its admissions for regular flights from the Zhukovsky airport, Moscow Region, Russia, to Tajikistan’s Dushanbe and Khujand.

Residents of Mangistau can learn flight specialties at the expense of Air Astana

Taking into account rapid development of Air Astana, this Kazakhstan’s flag air carrier has launched its program “Try on a Dream” aimed to select, hire and train personnel from all over Kazakhstan. Currently, the air carrier’s staff is 5,000 people, and its fleet consists of 31 aircraft. Air Astana operates its flights on 65 international and domestic air routes. The air company plans to expand its fleet up to 64 airliners and staff should be increased by 11% until 2020. In order to provide the air company with flight and engineering staff, the Air Astana’s own training center was set up.

Dushanbe – Tashkent flight: to be or not to be?

Tashkent, Uzbekistan – Dushanbe, Tajikistan, regular flights are still carried out without the existence of an appropriate Air Service Agreement between the two states.

Peter Foster: “We do not get any subsidies or guarantees from either the state or the shareholders”

The national carrier of Kazakhstan, Air Astana, celebrated its fifteenth anniversary in 2017: the airline completed its first flight from Astana to Almaty on May 15, 2002. Starting from domestic flights, the company during this period was able to significantly expand the geography of flights and enter the Russian and other foreign markets, continuing to increase passenger traffic from year to year. Today, the carrier’s route network includes 13 points in Kazakhstan and 29 more in the CIS and far-abroad countries. President of Air Astana Peter Foster, who headed the company in 2005, told “AviaPort” about the main stages of business development, the gradual expansion of fleet of aircraft and nuances of work in the Russian market.

Tashkent – Issyk-Kul flight: well started, but…

The authorities of Kyrgyzstan optimistically told that the plane from Uzbekistan landed at the Tamchy (Issyk-Kul International Airport) for the first time. The air route was launched specifically to attract tourists from the neighbouring country. To tell the truth, finding and buying air tickets for flights is extremely difficult and expensive.

Russia’s Yamal Airlines expected to resume flights to Tajikistan in summer

Картинки по запросу самолёты авиакомпании Ямал фото

Russia’s Yamal Airlines says it is
expected to resume flights to Tajikistanfrom Zhukovsky Airport in early summer.

are currently preparing application for permission for transit flights via Tajikistan’s
air space.  As soon as we receive affirmative reply we will start selling
tickets.  We plan to launch flights to Tajikistan in late May or early
June,” Yamal Airlines sales manager, Andrey Dubrov, was cited as saying by TASS.  

official source at the Ministry of transport of Tajikistansaid that they had coordinated the issue of Yamal Airlines’ flights to Tajikistan from Zhukovsky International Airport.  He,
however, refrained from giving further details

Recall,Dushanbe in December banned Yamal Airlines
flights to Tajikistan out ofZhukovsky Airportand Moscowsuspended flights of Tajik private air carrier, Somon Air, to the Russian

Tajik-Russian commission for economic cooperation reportedly agreed in Dushanbe on January 27 that Tajikistan‘s
privately owned air carrier Somon Air will be allowed to resume its flights to
four Russian cities — Krasnoyarsk, Krasnodar, Ufa, and Orenburg — beginning on
February 3.

Somon Air was barred from conducting its four weekly flights from Dushanbe to Moscow and
three weekly flights from the northern city of Khujandto Moscow in
early April again.

Russian transport ministry said the ban was response to Tajikistan‘s refusal to allow Russian airline
Yamal to fly to Dushanbe from the Zhukovsky
airport outside Moscow.

Tajikistan has warned Russia that flights by two Russian airlines to Tajikistan will be barred as of April 6 unless Russia reverses a decision to bar flights to Moscow by Tajikistan‘s
Somon Air.

Tajik transport ministry sent a note to the Russian Transport Ministry on April
4, saying that it would bar flights by Russia‘s
Ural Airlines and UTair to Dushanbe and the city
of Khujand if Russia‘s March 31 decision on Somon
Air was not revoked.

Tajikistan, however, postponed the suspension
of flights by Ural Airlines and UTair to Tajikistanafter Russia‘s Transport
Ministry invited Tajik aviation authorities to Moscow for negotiations.

negotiations between Dushanbe and Moscow over aviation disputes concluded in Moscow on April 28 and the sides reportedly agreed to lift
restrictions on Somon Air’s flights to Moscow.

history of this dispute dates back to early November.  The two countries
faced the threat of suspension of flights in early November because of a
dispute between Moscow and Dushanbeover the status of Russia’s Zhukovsky International Airport,
which was officially opened in May 2016.

Dushanbe called for a revision of existing bilateral agreements on mutual air
flights, saying that Zhukovsky is Moscow’s
fourth international airport and that it has increased the number of flights
from Moscow to Tajikistan.

Russian civil aviation authorities insisted that Zhukovsky International Airportis not under Moscow’s authority but of the town
of Ramenskoye.

Tajikistan that time agreed only to flights
for Ural Airlines and Tajik Air from Zhukovsky Airport.

Source –

Tashkent, Dushanbe make civil aviation breakthrough


The first 29 passengers arrived from Uzbekistanto Tajikistanby a direct flight. The historic event occurred at 08:05 am local time on April
11, 2017 when the Uzbekistan Airways’ plane landed at the Dushanbe International Airportin Tajikistan.

“I used to travel to your capital by a car, it was cheaper, but it took a
very long time, but now it’s been over an hour, and we’re already in Tajikistan”. “It’s
very convenient”. “I hope the visa will be settled on the Internet to make it available
for the majority of those who wish to visit Dushanbeand Tashkent”, one
of the first passengers of that flight shares his impressions.

Direct air communication between neighboring countries was interrupted
in 1992 with the beginning of the civil war in Tajikistan. Since then, given the
permanent tension in bilateral relations, there has been no question of its
renewal until some time.

However, not only because the flight can be called long-awaited – after several
false starts, the confidence in the possible solution of this issue was melting
just before our eyes.

Expectations and reality

Transport agencies of the two countries agreed during negotiations in
the Tajik capital on November 30, 2016 to resume direct flights en route Tashkent, UzbekistanDushanbe, Tajikistan. Then the head of the
Civil Aviation Department of the Ministry of Transport of Tajikistan Yusuf
Rahmon told that “transport workers discussed the profitability and the number
of possible future flights and the air route network”. In addition, he voiced
the assumption that the first flight could take place in January 2017.

The forecast was not justified. In the last days of January, it became
known only that the direct flights between the capitals can be launched not
earlier February 10th.

“Today, a large number of citizens of Tajikistan and Uzbekistan cross the
state border between the two countries, many of whom live in a neighboring
country, we would be happy to re-launch the once used air bridge and thereby
contribute to the history of friendly relations between the two countries”, said
Alisher Rustamov, Commercial Director, Somon Air, Tajikistan.

On the appointed day, the plane of this Tajik air carrier actually flew
from Dushanbe to Tashkent. There was a so-called experimental
technical flight. On board, there were representatives of Tajikistan’s transport department, Somon Air, Dushanbe International Airport,
journalists and 14 passengers.

Attempt no. 1

The date of the launch of the regular air service was now named to be on
February 20th. 26 passengers bought their air tickets. But one day
prior the flight, the Tashkent International Airportnotified the Tajik air carrier that it could not take the first flight from the
capital of Tajikistan.
At that time, the Uzbek side did not comment on its decision.

“The day before, we were informed by telephone that the scheduled flight
would not take place for security reasons, but we did not receive any
explanation whatsoever that might mean”. Although the Uzbek side handed over
Somon Air’s operational permit to Somon Air at the Tashkenttalks on February 10th to carry out flights to Tashkentairport beginning from February 20th,” said Sherali Ganjalzoda,
Minister  of Transport, Tajikistan.

Later it became known that Somon Air was late with a request for the flight,
and the Uzbek authorities, having not had enough time to issue permission, were
forced to refuse.

The leadership of Uzbekistan Airways sent an official letter to the
Tajik authorities, which specified that the Uzbek side received a request for
charter flights, rather than regular flights from Somon Air. And, moreover, the
request was made on February 19th – the day before the flight, on
Sunday. Thus, Uzbekistandid not have enough time to make a decision. The letter also indicated that it was
necessary to receive a form for flights throughout the season for regular
flights. In addition, Somon Air did not open its representative office in Tashkent and, accordingly, did not organize the sale of air
tickets in Uzbekistan.

The Tajik air carrier conducted its own proceedings, which resulted in
the loss of all of its officials, including the commercial director Alisher

Attempt no. 2

The Press Service of Dushanbe International Airport reported that the
cancelled flight was postponed until February 23, 2017. It was also planned
that in addition to the ordinary passengers of the flight to Tashkent,
representatives of Tajik aviation authorities would also fly to solve all
issues related to the restoration of air traffic with their counterparts in Uzbekistan.

Later, Uzbekistan Airways explained that according to the instructions,
a foreign airline must submit documents to the National Airline of Uzbekistan
not less than 30 days before the scheduled date of commencement of flights.

On this day, February 23rd, the Somon Air representative met
with Uzbek colleagues, where “detailed explanations were given regarding the
rules for flight operations by foreign airlines to the Republic of Uzbekistan”.

It remained unknown when the Tajik air carrier would fly to Tashkent. There were
fears about the further behaviour of the leadership of the Tajik airline.
Having the dispute with the Russian aviation authorities because of the alleged
violation of parity in the flights of the air companies of the two countries,
it was impossible to exclude that Tajikistan would require some restrictions for
the flights by Uzbek planes until the permission for Somon Air is issued for
flights to Tashkent.

Attempt no. 3

In late March 2017, the media reported that Uzbekistan Airways began
selling air tickets for the next regular flight between the capitals of the two
neighbouring countries. The flight was scheduled for April 4th.
However, it did not take place because of “insufficient loading of the plane”.

Shokasym Shoislamov, the Ambassador of Uzbekistan to Tajikistan, explained
another disruption in the resumption of air travel with the lack of time to
prepare a package of necessary documents:

“Unfortunately, by the time we did not meet the deadline, and the flight
was postponed to Tuesday, April 11th. We planned that today the crew
of the first flight, which was supposed to fly to Dushanbe, will take part in the event. I ask
you not to give a political colour to this issue, in general it seems to me
that when someone really badly wants something, that’s exactly what happens –
you do not fit in. The reason for the cancellation is that we did not have time
to solve a set of issues related to the documentation”.

Source –

Dushanbe – Tashkent flight: both countries hurried

The Uzbekistan
Airways’ presentation was held in Dushanbe,
, on
Tuesday, April 4, 2017. The presentation was opened by Shokosim Shoislamov, the
Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republicof Uzbekistan to Tajikistan.

“We have
waited for launching the flight en route TashkentDushanbe for a
long time, we planned that today there will be those who were supposed to fly with
the first flight. To my great regret, this flight is postponed. Maybe
 for a week”,the Uzbek diplomat said.

the very beginning he warned the representatives of the media and participants
present at the presentation that “there should be no any speculations and
incorrect opinions about why the scheduled TashkentDushanbe flight
was not operated on April 4, 2017”.

I have an impression that when you want something too much, you are in a hurry,
you do not always fit into the legal norms, how all this should be done. The
same has recently happened with the Somon Air’s first flight to Tashkent. Today, the same
thing happened. The reason I want to stress is that in order to launch an
international flight, you need to solve a set of issues related to
documentation. Unfortunately, we did not meet”, the Ambassador of Uzbekistan toTajikistansaid.

to him, negotiations began on Monday between Somon Air and Uzbekistan Airways,
which are continuing today.

Mr. Shoislamov
noted that the delegation of Tajikistan consisting of representatives of the apparatus
of the President of the Republic of Tajikistan, the Ministry of Foreign
Affairs, the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Transport and other agencies
will leave for Tashkent tomorrow, and the day after tomorrow, April 6, 2017 the
draft agreement on international air communication between Uzbekistan and
Tajikistan will be discussed there.

 “When the agreement is initialed and prepared
for final signing at a high level, there will be an opportunity for regular air
communication between the countries”, the Uzbek Ambassador said.

advised the media “not to look for a black cat in a dark room”, and not
politicize this issue.

addition, the Ambassador of the Republicof Uzbekistan to Tajikistan noted
one more point – the issue of security.

“Why do
we have to work out the documents carefully? Because there is a complex of
nuances that we must anticipate in advance. For example, the situation that is
developing around our region in the field of security. I take this opportunity
to express my deep condolences to the Russian Embassy in Tajikistan about the tragic events in St. Petersburg. In order
not to allow any gaps, slots, so that someone could use them in the future, it
is better for us to carefully work out all issues today, including security
issues”, the Uzbek diplomat concluded.

Recall,Uzbekistan Airways’ the
first TashkentDushanbe flight was supposed to fly today.
However, it was cancelled. Low passenger load of the aircraft was called to be
the reason of this event.

Source –

Tajik transport ministry accuses Russian aviation authorities of violating air communication agreement

Tajik Transport Ministry says allowing the Russian Yamal Airlines flights would
break the parity of Russiaand Tajikistan in the number
of flights operated between Moscow and Tajikistan.

Tajik ministry notes that an agreement on air communication signed between Tajikistan and Russiain 1998 provides for the parity of the countries in the number of airlines
allowed flying between Moscow and Tajikistan.

Russian airlines account for 60 percent of flights operated between the
countries,” the ministry said.

to the statistical data from the Tajik ministry, Russian airlines have operated
496 flights to Tajikistan’s airports over the first two months of this year,
while Tajik airline shave operated only 295 flights to Russia’s airports over
the same two-month period. 

Tajik Ministry of Transport notes that they proposed Yamal Airlines to operate
twice-weekly service from the Zhukovsky Airport to the Tajik
southern cities of Kulyab and Kurgan-Tuibe but Yamal Airlines rejected the
proposal to serve Kulyab and Kurgan-Tuibe.      

Tajik side has compromised and proposed Yamal Airlines to operate twice-weekly
service from the Zhukovsky Airport to Dushanbeand Khujand, but the Russian airlines rejected this proposal as well,” the
Tajik ministry said.  

Airlines has made application for more flights — four weekly to Dushanbe and three to Khujand – but Tajikistan does
not seem to think that was part of any deal.

the Russian Transport Ministry said on March 31 that as of April 3, Somon Air
would no longer be permitted to conduct its four weekly flights from Dushanbe to Moscow and
three weekly flights from the northern city of Khujandto Moscow.

Russian ministry said the ban was a tit-for-tat response to Tajikistan’s refusal to allow Yamal Airlines to
fly to Dushanbe from the Zhukovsky Airport outside Moscow.  

As it
had been reported earlier, Dushanbe in December
banned Yamal Airlines flights to Tajikistanout of Zhukovsky Airportand Moscowsuspended flights of Tajik private air carrier, Somon Air, to the Russian
regions.  The ban included flights of the airline to all Russian cities,
except Moscow and St. Petersburg.

and Russian authorities reached an agreement aimed at resolving a dispute that
has prevented some civilian flights between their countries at a meeting of the
Tajik-Russian commission for economic cooperation that too place in Dushanbe on
January 27, 2017.  Somon Air was allowed to resume its flights to four
Russian cities — Krasnoyarsk, Krasnodar,Ufa, and Orenburg— beginning on February 3.

history of this dispute dates back to early November last year.  The two
countries faced the threat of suspension of flights in early November because
of a dispute between Moscow and Dushanbeover the status of Russia’s Zhukovsky International Airport,
which was officially opened in May 2016.

Dushanbe called for a revision of existing bilateral agreements on mutual air
flights, saying that Zhukovsky is Moscow’s
fourth international airport and that it has increased the number of flights
from Moscow to Tajikistan.

Russian civil aviation authorities insisted that Zhukovsky International Airportis not under Moscow’s authority but of the town
of Ramenskoye.

Tajikistan that time agreed only to flights
for Ural Airlines and Tajik Air from Zhukovsky Airport.

Source –

Zhukovsky connected with Kazakhstan through Trans Siberian routes

Картинки по запросу Россия Казахстан флаги

Aсcording to Kommersant
edition, Russian and Kazakh aviation authorities have found a compromise on a
number of mutual claims, but for this they had to make a series of painful concessions.
Astana recognized the Zhukovsky International Airport near Moscow as a regional one, which should
increase the number of flights to Astana and Almaty, and agreed to appoint a second
air carrier for air routes from RussiaMoscow allowed Air Astana, Kazakhstan, to fly along the Trans-Siberian
routes to Mongolia without royalties, which are usually paid by foreign carriers. But Kommersant sources
consider this compromise as “ambiguous” one, since concessions can lead to the
destruction of the current regulatory system in the industry.

Russian airlines get an opportunity to fly from Zhukovsky airport to
Astana and Almaty, the Ministry of Transport of the Russian Federation reported to Kommersant.
This becomes possible in exchange for granting the right Kazakh air carriers to
fly to Mongolia on the
Trans-Siberian routes over the territory of the Russian Federation. The Ministry for
Investment and Development of Kazakhstan specified that the decision was made “following
a series of negotiations based on the existing bilateral partnership”. Astana
also clarified that Kazakh air carriers will be able to “launch new destinations
to Ulaanbaatar and Tokyo”.

In addition, the sources, which are familiar with the situation say that
aviation authorities of the two countries agreed to appoint two air carriers on
each side on the air routes between Russia and Kazakhstan with the frequency of seven flights a week and the possibility of further
increase up to 14 flights. For a while,  Russia’s Aeroflot and Kazakhstan’s
Air Astana work on Moscow – Astana and Moscow – Almaty routes with
a frequency of seven times a week for each air carrier. S7 Airlines, Pobeda and
SCAT Airlines fly from/to the regions of Russia. The carriers of Kazakhstan also
got the right to daily fly from Astana and Almaty to Baikonur. Russia’s ALROSA,
Rusline and Ural Airlines fly there nowadays, but for one-time permits.

Regulation of air transportation was one of the most acute problems
between the Russian Federationand Kazakhstan.
Kommersant reported on March 25, 2016 that Moscowrefused to allow Air Astana to fly along the Trans-Siberian routes to Mongolia without royalties, the payments that are taken from all foreign companies on
such air routes, for fear of setting a precedent.

Air Astana, in turn,  was called this
argument as “insolvent one”, because the route begins and ends in Asia. The Ministry for Investment and Development of
Kazakhstan told Kommersant that an alternative flight to Mongolia through China would have cost even more.

The RF also insisted on the provision of seven frequencies for the
second air carrier, not affiliated with the first one (Aeroflot), to which Kazakhstan was not ready, as there is no second
large airline in Kazakhstan.
And the Ministry of Transport of the Russian
, which has assigned the regional status to the
airport in Zhukovsky airport located in about 50 km from Moscow, is interested in recognizing this
controversial decision by aviation authorities of other countries. This would give
Zhukovsky the right to use the un-selected quotas for flights from Russian
regions abroad, while the quotas of Moscow’s
Sheremetievo, Vnukovo and Domodedovo are chosen in the popular destinations. Kommersant
earlier wrote, the regional status of Zhukovsky evoked questions, for example,
in Israel and Tajikistan. As
a result, in November 2016, Tajikistan managed to agree on a temporary parity.

But a compromise that resolves controversial issues can create a number
of risks. The Kommersant source, who is familiar with the situation, says that
the decision is “assessed as unequal”, since the Russian side “missed the
real leverage of controlling air traffic within the CIS, losing in the issue of
flights on the Trans-Siberian routes”. Another expert added that “the
recognition of Zhukovsky as regional and the appointment of new airlines will
create a serious precedent, meaning that the existing system of bilateral
agreements can be modified depending on the situation”. Fyodor Borisov, chief
expert of the Institute of Transport Economics and Transport Policy of the
Higher School of Economics, notes that intergovernmental agreements allow
taking into account the specifics of certain aspects of relations between
states, but adds that it is also important “to preserve the uniformity of
existing practice” in order to avoid new controversial situations.

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