New State Airline to Be Called Rosavia

A new airline being created by the Moscow city government and state-run Russian Technologies will be called Rosavia, Mayor Yury Luzhkov said Saturday, Interfax reported.

Designed to serve as an alternative to Aeroflot, the airline, which earlier functioned under the working name Russian Airlines, will incorporate other regional carriers, including failed regional airlines such as AiRUnion, Krasair and Samara.

"The company will be big and serious and have a powerful potential to compete with Aeroflot," Luzhkov said after a meeting with Sergei Ivanov, the deputy prime minister responsible for the airline industry.

Luzhkov and Russian Technologies head Sergei Chemezov on Saturday sent a letter to the Federal Anti-Monopoly Service requesting that Aeroflot be stripped of its royalties, the service's deputy head Anatoly Golomolzin said.

Aeroflot receives "royalties" from international companies when their aircraft fly over Russian territory.