Norilsk Nickel details Krasnoyarsk joint air service plan

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Russian metals company Norilsk Nickel has detailed its joint plan with Krasnoyarsk territorial authorities to develop a local airline service.

Norilsk Nickel director Leo Strzhalkovski says its in-house carrier Taimyr Avia intends to acquire four Boeing 737-700s and four ATR 42 turborops to serve intra-regional routes.

Taimyr Avia, which operates under the brand of NordStar, has three 737-800s in service with two more scheduled for delivery by the end of this year.

"We'll use further aircraft to establish air links to eight cities within the Krasnoyarsk territory and provide connections to outbound flights," says Strzhalkovski. He identifies a dozen domestic cities as well as Dushanbe, Tashkent and Beijing as possible destinations.

NordStar will collaborate with the Krasnoyarsk government-owned air enterprise KrasAvia which comprises six airports throughout the region. A government spokesman says the two carriers will remain standalone legal entities and the project does not envisage setting up a new operator or joint venture.

"Rather, KrasAvia is to bear major responsibility for regional services and NordStar for flights on long-haul routes to and from Krasnoyarsk," he says.