Turkish tour operators continue to think through workarounds to overcome “air sanctions” with the support local authorities. In particular, there has already been talk of creating not one, but several air carriers with Turkish licenses at once, which will carry Russian tourists – for the sake of them, the country's aviation rules have even been slightly corrected. Moreover, one of these new airlines has already been announced in full – right down to the name and restart date.
The first step was expectedly made by the largest “aircraft owner” of the tour operators with Turkish roots – the tour operator Pegas Touristik. According to Turkish media, he announced the creation of a new airline called Southwind. The new carrier will be based in Antalya, operate with a Turkish license, but in fact it will be created on the basis of two airlines licensed in Russia, Pegas Fly and Nordwind. The company will begin work on five Airbus aircraft. At the same time, according to Turkish media, the application for the establishment of the company was accepted by the General Directorate of Civil Aviation (DGCA) and the process accelerated.
Coral and Anex also announced the creation of their own airlines with Turkish licenses. Turkish experts considered that at the moment Pegasus has a total of 120 aircraft, including Nordwind (63 aircraft) and Pegas Fly (2), Anex, with its Azur Airlines – 35 liners and 20 more belong to Royal Flight “Corala”. All of them are licensed in Russia.
The creation of new companies is due, among other things, to the fact that air sanctions and the transportation of tourists on Turkish Airlines and Pegasus Airlines “regular flights” significantly increase the cost of transportation. The tariff, which reaches 700 euros per person for tourist groups, is proving too expensive, and Turkey cannot afford a decline in Russian tourists. “There is a need for additional flights and other airlines between Russia and Turkey,” experts say, and, as the Turks add, the Minister of Culture and Tourism Mehmet Ersoy himself has made efforts to allow Turkish tour operators, which form the basis of Russian tourism, to open an airline in Turkey.
In particular, some provisions of the sectoral law were “amended”. At the initiative of the Turkish General Directorate of Civil Aviation, a resolution was adopted that simplified the conditions for establishing an airline for Turkish tour operators for a certain period of time. The simplifications are as follows: $15 million of required capital reduced to $6 million and the required fleet of 5 aircraft to 3. Russia will be able to establish companies that will carry out commercial air transportation in Turkey without difficulty. These benefits will be valid for one year,” Turkish publications write.
True, several questions remain. Moreover, from the Turkish side, the most relevant question is how Russia will react to the emergence of one-way tourist traffic, since its airlines cannot fly due to sanctions.
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