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Ukraine is preparing to open airports: is it possible to return passenger flights in the near future?

Kseniya KapustynskaNews
Ukraine wants to resume flights of passenger aircraft
Ukraine wants to resume passenger aircraft flights

It will take a lot of time and effort to bring passenger planes back to the Ukrainian skies. At the same time, the first flights of civil aviation in a country at war may be cargo flights rather than passenger flights. The reason is the rather complicated procedure for approving the safety of such flights. In the course of this procedure, Ukraine may receive a number of recommendations from its partners on what conditions should be provided for air carriers.

This was told to OBOZ.UA by Bohdan Dolintse, an expert on aviation market development. He commented on the announcement of the start of official negotiations on the resumption of civil flights in Ukraine. According to the expert, it is too early to talk directly about the opening of airports.

"Today, we are not talking about the opening, but about the beginning of consultations. They are necessary for Ukraine to involve aviation regulators (those countries that could potentially start flying to Ukraine) in this process so that it is a multilateral solution," Dolintse said.

According to him, Ukraine currently has some information about the means and measures taken to ensure aviation and flight safety. And during the negotiations, this data will be provided to aviation regulators.

The first step will be to assess the existing risks. "They (the regulators - Ed.) will issue certain recommendations and either say that these measures are sufficient to start resuming flights or make a list of necessary measures that Ukraine must implement for them to consider the Ukrainian space safe enough for their carriers to start flying," the expert said about the procedure.

It should also be borne in mind that it is not just about passenger flights. According to Dolintse, civilian air traffic as such is considered.

"The risk assessment considers the possibility of humanitarian flights, technical flights (distillation of empty boards), cargo, regular, irregular, and passenger flights in particular. Based on this analysis, a decision can be made on whether or not to allow a certain type of air transportation. From the point of view of cargo transportation, it may seem easier, as if the risks may be lower. But from the point of view of the aircraft itself, flight safety, whether a cargo plane or a civilian plane with passengers, they have, in principle, the same requirements for flying. Of course, given the potential number of victims, cargo transportation is more likely to resume faster and easier than, for example, passenger transportation," the expert warned.

As OBOZ.UA previously reported, experts say that before resuming civilian air traffic, Ukraine needs to radically address security issues. After all, the war is ongoing, and airports can become desirable targets for the enemy.

It should also be borne in mind that Yurii Hnat, the spokesman for the Ukrainian Air Force, has previously made it clear that the only condition for resuming flights will be that the military has all the necessary means to protect the sky. He explained that currently, all Ukrainian airfields are "operational". And they are all under the control of the military.

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