As sanctions caused by the war in Ukraine continue to bite, is Russia’s Aeroflot nearing recovery quicker than expected?
Using figures from RadarBox.com, we will explore the improvements made by the Russia-based carrier, as well as what the rest of the year could hold for the carrier.
Without further ado, let’s get into the numbers…
Aeroflot’s Improving Numbers…
For March 5-12, Russia’s Aeroflot handled 535 movements, based on a seven-day rolling average provided by the flight tracking company.
This represents a staggering increase of 155.98% compared to the same period last year but is 229 movements short of achieving pre-pandemic levels.
Below is the last four weeks’ worth of data for the carrier:
|Date||2019 Numbers||2022 Numbers||2023 Numbers||Percentage Difference (2023 vs. 2022)|
|February 5-12||780 movements||375 movements||534 movements||+42.40%|
|February 12-19||776 movements||377 movements||534 movements||+41.64%|
|February 19-26||758 movements||343 movements||537 movements||+56.56%|
|February 26-March 5||761 movements||290 movements||533 movements||+83.79%|
What we can see from the data is a sharp increase in movements, especially as Aeroflot was able to restore and change up its route network in the wake of sanctions in Russia.
If the environment remains the same sanctions-wise, and the carrier continues to grow in this way, then they could be close to pre-pandemic levels by 2024.
The Russian Carrier in 2023…
The Moscow-based airline group, the largest in the Russian Federation, stated the update to its strategy was based on aligning the group’s goals to the “Comprehensive program for the development of Russia’s air transport industry through 2030,” which was approved by the Russian Government in 2022.
The Group announced it would focus on goals to remove reliance on non-Russian technology and to continue its leadership in the Russian airline market.
The carrier stated it had already moved to a Russian-made booking system, Leonardo, as part of this strategy.
In a press release issued on 30 January 2023 regarding the update to its strategic direction, Sergey Aleksandrovsky, CEO of PJSC Aeroflot, said: “Aeroflot Group strategy has been updated to reflect the new realities for the Russian civil aviation.”
“In the short term, our efforts will be focused on ensuring technological independence from foreign products across all of the Group’s business processes.”
“Besides, we aim to provide connectivity of the country and increase the air travel mobility of the population through expanding the regional route network.”
“Maximizing the opportunities for travelers to fly direct within the country is a task of national importance, which we will continue to implement in accordance with the parameters of the new Strategy.”
While international sanctions on travel and supply chains continue in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the Aeroflot Group looks to other avenues to continue operations and revenue.
In the strategy statement, there is a focus on consolidating Group working for efficiencies, and maximizing market share.
The Group reported a share of around 40% in 2021, with a projection to increase to 50% of all Russian air transport.
The Russian Government has also set the industry of carrying over 100 million passengers in 2023.
While the opening up of key, sanction-free destinations such as China may be welcomed by Russian airlines, with limited international support and supplies, the pressure will continue to keep airlines and fleets flying.