The Antonov state aircraft manufacturing enterprise may create its own low-cost airline. Antonov Airlines’ Director Mykhailo Kharchenko announced this in an interview with the RBK Ukraine publication.
According to Kharchenko, the Antonov state aircraft manufacturing enterprise has several An-148 and An-158 passenger airplanes, some of which were previously operated by the AeroSvit airline and Ukraine International Airlines (UIA).
However, these aircraft are currently not flying because investment in restoration of their airworthiness is necessary.
"From Antonov's business point of view, it is easier to build airplanes and give them to others to operate. The possibility of Antonov creating its own low-cost airline has been considered. Of course, this is a troublesome and difficult area of business with a huge level of responsibility, primarily the responsibility to maintain a high level of safety. A single aircraft accident can wipe out decades of achievements and entail huge losses. However, this this idea has the right to an attempt at development," Kharchenko said.
According to him, such a low-cost airline could fly to resort destinations. "We would fly on charter routes in the summer. There are insufficient airplanes during that period. When the holiday season begins, demand for flights to Turkey, Egypt, and, Bulgaria increases sharply. Our regional passenger aircraft can fly to these countries, as well as to other European countries," Kharchenko said.
He also said during the interview that creation of an airport for low-cost airlines in Hostomel would require about UAH 1 billion.