Turkmenistan Airlines To Acquire A Boeing 777-200F

The government of Turkmenistan announced in a recent meeting that it is planning to purchase a Boeing 777-200F. This aircraft will be added to the fleet of Turkmenistan Airlines. Altogether, the acquisition is part of the country’s plan to establish its status as a major center of international transport.

Turkmenistan Airlines Cargo
Turkmenistan has plans to expand cargo operations. Photo: Turkmenistan Airlines

Turkmenistan Airlines to expand freight traffic

As reported by the State News Agency of Turkmenistan on June 19, state-owned carrier, Turkmenistan Airlines, was instructed to sign an agreement to purchase the 777-200F from Frankfurt-based lease company, Aircraft Finance Germany.

The acquisition was announced at a meeting of the Turkmenistan government held to discuss import substitution, innovation, and international cooperation. The assembly heard proposals to improve the structure of the country’s transport and communications sectors.

Turkmenistan officials believe the new cargo plane will help to expand the country’s international presence. Turkmenistan president Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov said that an integral part of the plans for the transport sector is the modernization of the existing infrastructure and the re-equipping of domestic civil aviation. The head of state emphasized,

“It is necessary to use all available opportunities in order for Turkmenistan to establish the status of one of the largest international transport centers. In this regard, domestic aviators will be able to expand the geography of regular freight traffic and increase the frequency of flights on existing lines.”

When speaking about the development of Turkmenistan’s aviation industry, the president focused on the essential need for the training of flight and ground service personnel.

Turkmenistan Airlines 777-200
Turkmenistan Airlines to acquire one Boeing 777-200F cargo aircraft. Photo: Eric Salard via Flickr

The 777-200F fills a gap in Turkmenistan’s fleet

The Boeing 777-200F is an efficient long-range freight aircraft that is an important addition to Turkmenistan Airlines’ fleet, both in terms of cargo capacity and economy. With a maximum take-off weight of 766,800 pounds and a maximum revenue payload of 232,000 pounds, the 777-200F has a range of up to 4,885 miles with a full load.

The aircraft also provides environmental benefits. Reduced carbon emissions result from its better fuel economy. Meanwhile, its lower noise levels give it maximum access to noise-sensitive airports such as London Heathrow.

As of last year, according to Planespotters, Turkmenistan Airlines was operating a passenger fleet of 19 aircraft with an average age of 10.4 years. Altogether, the fleet consisted of four 737-700s, eight 737-800s, three 757-200s, three 777-200LRs, and one Bombardier CRJ-700. Last year, the airline ordered another 777-200LR to add to its fleet. Furthermore, existing cargo services are operated by eight Ilyushin IL-76 aircraft.

Turkmenistan Airlines Cargo Plane Landing
The airline’s cargo operations will benefit from the new aircraft. Photo: Steve Lynes via Flickr

Turkmenistan Airlines overcomes EU ban

Last February, Turkmenistan Airlines was banned from flying in EU airspace by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA). The ban came amid fears that the airline was failing to meet international air safety standards. These concerns arose after a visit from EASA to its Ashgabat hub.

Subsequently, the carrier worked with Lufthansa Consulting to improve the quality of its safety, flight operations, and maintenance. Therefore, the ban was lifted in October, enabling the airline to resume flights to the EU.

What are your thoughts on this decision by Turkmenistan Airlines? Is this a good move for the carrier? Let us know what you think in the comment section.