GE Commercial Aviation Training (GECAT) and Russian airline S7 have joined forces to develop a new flight simulator training centre in Moscow.

To be built near the Russian capital’s Domodedovo airport, the centre is expected to open in the second quarter of 2007.

GECAT will initially provide Airbus A300/A310 and Boeing 737-300 flight simulators for the centre, with other types, such as 757/767 and A320 simulators, to follow later.

The company says S7 is one of a number of Russian airlines that are turning to Western-built aircraft for their future fleet growth.

S7 already operates a fleet of 10 737-500s and six A310s. Other Russian carriers operate a total of 18 737-300s.

“GECAT has been involved in the training of flightcrews from Russia for more than 10 years,” says Peter Niemy, vice-president of business development and marketing.

“We believe that the time is right for a training centre in Russia dedicated to serving the market for pilot training on the rapidly growing fleet of Western aircraft types.”

Oleg Vasiliev, general manager of the S7 training centre, says: “S7 is delighted to be working with GECAT in establishing a flight training centre that will serve both our own training needs as well as those of other airlines in the region.”

Source: Flight International