SAINT PETERSBURG, RUSSIA Aeroflot Group subsidiary Rossiya Airlines is planning to start operations with the Russian-made single-aisle Irkut MC-21s in summer 2022.

Although the debut of MC-21 is still around a year away, the airline has already begun preparations to organize cockpit and cabin crew training, establish a maintenance network on potential routes, and update information systems.

Rossiya says the MC-21 will be an “integral part” of the Aeroflot Group strategy to build a carrier that operates a core fleet of modern Russian-built aircraft. The carrier has been assured by Irkut that the technical acceptance process for the airline’s first MC-21 is on track to start in spring 2022.

If there are no outstanding technical issues, the aircraft will begin serving Rossiya routes in the summer.