Tomsk CRJ lease plan hits age snag

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Siberia-based operator Tomsk Avia has put off taking leases on Bombardier CRJ200s citing a regulatory age limit for imported aircraft.

The carrier planned to acquire three to five CRJ200s to renew its fleet centred on Antonov An-24 and An-26 turboprops with a view to taking first delivery in February.

Last year Tomsk Avia identified the suitable jets built in 2000 and started making arrangements for funding their leases.

But director general Viktor Marjenkin says their age does not meet a recently-issued regulation which requires that imported aircraft should not be older than 10 years.

"It turned out that finding available newer CRJ200s on the secondary market is difficult," he says, indicating that Tomsk Avia will nevertheless pursue its fleet modernisation plan.