Russian airlines begin to reduce even domestic flights en masse

Russian airlines began to cancel domestic flights due to a reduction in state support. In 2023, subsidies for the regional flight program bypassing Moscow were cut from RUB9 billion [approx. USD116,770,000 – ed.] to RUB7.5 billion [approx. USD97,308,000 – ed.].

Source: Russian state-owned news agency Izvestia writes about this with reference to sources in the industry.

The subsidy program was introduced by the Russian government to support the industry after Western sanctions against the Russian aviation industry.

It is noted that the reason for the reduction in subsidies is the savings in a number of expenditure items against the backdrop of budget deficit.

Most cancelled flights are in Omsk and Tyumen oblasts, as well as Tatarstan, the city of St Petersburg and Dagestan.

"The Federal Air Transport Agency approached the issue formally: they removed from the program those routes for which airlines have not yet signed agreements on co-financing flights with regional authorities (flights are partially financed from the federal budget, partly from regional ones).

At the same time, the budget process works differently in different regions. Some are only signed by late spring or early summer without any delays. This practice has existed for many years," said Izvestia’s source inside the industry.

As a result, most of the routes that were not included in the subsidy program turned out to be in Omsk and Tyumen oblast, Tatarstan, St Petersburg and Dagestan.

Earlier, the Ministry of Transport of the Russian Federation has announced a possible increase in the cost of air tickets for domestic flights by 15-30% due to a decrease in transportation subsidies in the summer season of 2023.

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