The European Commission has lifted flight restrictions into Europe imposed on all operators from Swaziland, as well as for Cebu Pacific in the Philippines and Kazakhstan’s Air Astana with the latest revision of the EU air safety list, or so-called blacklist. The EC said it based its decisions on various sources and hearings before the EU Air Safety Committee, which met from March 25 to 27.
The Central Asian Republic of Kazakhstan plans to launch a domestic airline, Air Kazakhstan, in early 2015 with a fleet of 10 new Bombardier Q400 twin turboprops.
Russian Helicopters has delivered an Mi-26T to Kazakhstan’s Emergencies Ministry. It is the first of the type–capable of carrying a 44,000-pound payload–to enter service in the country. The helicopter was delivered after an overhaul and modifications at a repair facility in Novosibirsk, Russia. Kazakhstan has commissioned Russian Helicopters to overhaul and modify two Mi-26 military helicopters, which had previously been in storage for 20 years. They will be used for diverse operations, including fire fighting and evacuations, the manufacturer said.
A Bombardier CRJ200 operated by Kazakh regional airline SCAT crashed on Tuesday near the village of Kyzyl Tu in southeast Kazakhstan, killing all 15 passengers and six crewmembers. Although reports from Kazakhstan indicate the existence of low clouds and fog, a Bombardier spokesman couldn’t confirm the weather conditions at the time of the accident.
The European Union’s so-called safety blacklist, which bans carriers from specified countries deemed to have inadequate safety regulation standards, has been condemned as “misguided” by Tony Tyler, director general and CEO of the International Air Transport Association (IATA). During last month’s Central Asian summit on aviation safety, Tyler highlighted the bans on summit host Kazakhstan and its neighbor Kyrgyzstan. Carriers from these countries are banned from operating in EU airspace, with the partial exception of Kazakhstan’s Air Astana, which can operate only some of its fleet.
Eurocopter and Kazakhstan Engineering have signed an agreement formalizing a joint venture to assemble and customize Eurocopter EC145s at a new facility in Astana, Kazakhstan. Eurocopter Kazakhstan Engineering plans to assemble and deliver the first six of 45 EC145s the Kazakh government is acquiring through 2016.
EADS and Eurocopter last month signed a cooperation agreement with sovereign wealth fund Samruk-Kazyna to create a public-private joint venture in Kazakhstan. Under the agreement, EADS and Eurocopter will transfer “skills and know-how”
Feras, the American-founded executive flight support company active since 1992 in Eastern Europe, Russia and CIS countries, has inaugurated new facilities to support increased activities, which nearly doubled last year.
Antonov An-148 launch customer Scat Airlines of Kazakhstan will take its first two airplanes next month, if Ukrainian Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovich’s declarations during an official state visit with Kazakh president Nursultan Nazarbayev last month prove accurate. During ceremonies in the Kazakh capital Astana, the Ukrainian delegation presented their hosts with a model of the 80-seat twinjet.
Kazakhstan’s KazCosmos, is making its first appearance at Asian Aerospace, having been founded only last March. Kazakhstan has long been known for being the home of the famous Baikonur Cosmodrome, the site from which most of the major Soviet space launches were conducted, and has a wealth of facilities which the country now wants to market to the international space launch/satellite community.