Sukhoi’s civil aircraft division is hammering out new deals to supply up to 150 Superjet 100s in addition to firm orders already secured for 73 aircraft.

Speaking on the sidelines of an investment forum in Moscow, Sukhoi Holding general director Mikhail Pogosyan said the manufacturer was working towards finalising talks and signing contracts with a string of prospective customers.

“We’re negotiating both with domestic and foreign airlines,” he adds, voicing confidence that the discussions will translate into purchase agreements covering some 150 aircraft during this year.

Pogosyan would not, however, comment on the delay in starting Superjet 100 flight trials, which were originally scheduled to begin in 2007.

Sukhoi Civil Aircraft has obtained 73 firm orders, including a dozen from foreign carriers ItAli and Armavia, which placed orders for 10 and two respectively. Options cover another 41 aircraft.

Sukhoi’s factory KnAAPO has received a third PowerJet SaM146 engine to fit out a second Superjet 100 test aircraft slated for certification flights.

PowerJet co-director Yuri Basyuk says work has begun on creating a global system to provide technical support for future users of the SaM146. “It will comprise a certified maintenance facility, regional service and training centres as well as spare parts distribution network,” he says.

Source:'s sister premium news site Air Transport Intelligence news