Mon, Jun 30, 2003
Idea: Create A Single Commercial
At least on the surface, it
might seem like the days of Lenin revisited. Russian aviation
officials, facing a near-death experience in the country's civilian
aviation sector, want to see the creation of a single major
manufacturer -- one that would have a monopoly they say is needed
to compete with the likes of Airbus and Boeing.
Right now, there are more than 300 Russian design bureaus,
manufacturers and research facilities. Most, if not all of them,
are staring into the abyss of economic ruin. Deputy Prime Minister
Boris Alyoshin thinks the answer is to... collectivize.
"In order to guarantee our competitiveness we must concentrate
our resources and move in the direction of creating a single,
national aircraft construction company," he said after a recent
Cabinet meeting. "There is one opinion, and that is that we need
such a company, and we must move quickly to create it."
Alyoshin: Make The Military Pay For It
One idea put forth by
the deputy prime minister -- capitalize this single civil aviation
corporation with money derived from the relatively successful sale
of military aircraft. He also suggested forming partnerships with
aviation companies in Ukraine, China and India.
Russia once accounted for 25 percent of the world's civil
aviation manufacturing, putting out as many as 700 aircraft a year.
Last year, Russia produced just three civilian aircraft. Boeing, on
the other hand, produced 300. The Russian government could decide
on a state-backed aviation manufacturer as early as December.
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