Get the latest updates as we post them — right on your browser

. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Moscow Airports Need $1.5 Billion

Moscow's four airports need $1.5 billion for rebuilding work but the state does not have the money and the prospects for foreign investment are gloomy, a leading Russian aviation official said Thursday.

Leonid Shcheglov, head of an association which groups 40 airports in the former Soviet Union, said the money was needed to turn Moscow into a proper European hub.

"The government cannot provide this sum and we hope to get foreign investment. But nobody wants to invest because there are no guarantees from the Russian side," he said on the opening day of an international conference on airports.

Moscow's four airports -- Sheremetyevo, Domodyedovo, Bykovo and Vnukovo -- account for 74 percent of passengers flying into and out of Russia as well as 27 percent of total passenger volume and 17 percent of domestic cargo flights.

Professor Vladimir Kulikov from the Aeroproyekt research institute said Russian runways could only handle half the traffic volume of those in Western countries with similar climates.

He said foreign companies were using high-quality U.S. and German materials to reconstruct the runways at around 20 Russian airports. There are some 1,000 airports in Russia, 66 of which have federal status.

Deputy Transport Minister Arkady Suvorov said the state would give 30 billion rubles ($6 million) toward airport development in Russia this year and said local authorities had to give the same amount.