Number of area control centres slashed and manpower to be cut in massive shake-up

Russia's state air traffic management (ATM) corporation has embarked on a $5 billion programme of area control centre (ACC) rationalisation that makes Europe's efforts to consolidate pale into insignificance.

Between now and 2025 Russia intends to reduce the number of ACCs from 102 to 13, the corporation revealed at the ATC Maastricht 2007 conference last week.

The corporation's international relations chief Peter Shipil says work is about to begin on two of the consolidated ACCs and five should be completed by 2010.

Although he will not reveal the extent of manpower cuts the rationalisation programme will bring, he says the present total of 25,000 employees - of which 5,100 are controllers - will be considerably reduced despite the growth in total system capacity that modernisation and increasing demand are expected to bring. In 2006 there was a 5.7% increase in domestic traffic and a 10.9% rise in international business.

The investment is expected to be covered by user charges as the amount of domestic and international transiting traffic rises.

Source: Flight International