Sukhoi looking to double Superjet contracts in 2008

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Russia's Sukhoi aircraft manufacturer expects orders for its Superjet 100 civilian aircraft to double in 2008, the head of the holding company said on Tuesday.
BERLIN, May 27 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's Sukhoi aircraft manufacturer expects orders for its Superjet 100 civilian aircraft to double in 2008, the head of the holding company said on Tuesday.

The Superjet 100 project is a family of medium-range passenger aircraft developed by the Sukhoi Design Bureau in cooperation with major American and European aviation corporations, including Boeing, Snecma, Thales, Messier Dowty, Liebherr Aerospace, and Honeywell.

"We have secured 73 contracts and I am convinced we will double the number of orders for the Superjet 100 in 2008," Mikhail Pogosyan, Sukhoi's general director, told a news conference on the sidelines of the ILA-2008 international Berlin Air Show.

The first Superjet 100 airliner has completed ground tests and made its maiden flight earlier this month.

The list price of a 95-seat base model is $28 million, but the company is currently working on both smaller and larger capacity modifications.

The market for the Superjet 100 is estimated at around $100 billion for around 5,500 planes, up to 2023.

Alexei Fyodorov, president of Russia's United Aircraft Building Corporation, said the Russian aviation industry had been set the task of becoming one of the top three global civilian aircraft producers by 2025 occupying between 10% and 15% of the global market.

Russia's deputy industry and trade minister, Denis Manturov, who is also attending the six-day show, said Russia has proposed Germany buy some Superjet 100 aircraft.

"We discussed with German Chancellor Angela Merkel the participation of German companies Liebherr and Parker in the Superjet 100 project. Of course, we are interested in orders for the aircraft from German airlines," Manturov said.

Sukhoi is in talks with German companies Lufthansa and Air Berlin with a view to reaching a number of agreements, Pogosyan said.

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