International Aviation and Space Salon MAKS opens cooperation prospects between countries
German business representatives have estimated Russian market potential as high and are ready to carry out joint projects. That is the major conclusion the participants of the Lower Saxony-Russia round table have arrived at. The round table was held online ahead of the International Aviation and Space Salon.
The forum initiated by the authorities and businesses of the Lower Saxony federal land was destined to help Russian and German aerospace industry players find common ground. It is no accident that the event was held right before MAKS 2021: Amid concerns related to some of the politicians’ unfriendly statements, members of business, scientific and educational communities want to make sure once again that the Russian side remains open to cooperation and that German companies’ participation in the largest international exhibition of 2021 will be productive and fruitful. It can be stated that the answers received have satisfied the parties and inclined them to continue the dialogue.
A considerable part of forum speeches was devoted to reviewing the Russian market’s economic health and its perspectives, including aspects like macroeconomics, implementing space and aircraft industry programs, conducting scientific research. Thus, German experts have highlighted that the air transport sector in Russia has made less losses due to the pandemic than other regions: the decline in traffic volume is 43% against Germany’s 74%. In turn, Russia’s air traffic recovery rate is forecasted to be higher than in Europe: 3% against less than 2%. Therefore, the market will rebound to its pre-crisis state faster, which means that demand for new civilian aircraft in Russia will be formed earlier. Experts estimate the demand at 1470 new aircraft for the period until the year 2038. “Surely, as part of the import substitution policy, the Russian-produced aircraft will account for the largest portion of this amount, but there is still room for international cooperation, and the Russian market is still important”, Gerit Schulze of Germany Trade and Invest emphasizes.
As for the space programs, the Head of ESA permanent mission to Moscow Rene Pichel has noted that Russia’s space activities make “particularly great” accomplishments. He emphasized that ISS was in its regular function, and carried out research activities. In spite of the fact that Russia’s space budget makes only a half of European investments and one tenth of American ones, Russian space industry still “plays a crucial role in the country”, Pichel stresses.
Other assessments were made by representatives of the companies that share histories of long-standing and fruitful cooperation with Russia. “Russia’s aircraft industry is developing pretty intensely. The market is still promising and interesting”, states Andreas Kalina, Vice-President of MTU Maintenance Hannover GmbH. Norbert Steinkemper, Head of Marketing in Broetje-Automation GmbH, has, for his part, reiterated that Russian enterprises have always been good partners, and expressed hope that this would continue to be the case. Mr. Steinkemper is positive that the cooperation should not only be continued but also broadened. “Now, as protectionism is growing in intensity everywhere, we place our bets on international partnerships. And that is why we shall be present at MAKS 2021”, he summarized.
It can be stated that the dialogue that has taken place was a successful one. Presentations given by the National Research Center Zhukovsky Institute, Irkut Corporation and Ulyanovsk Region Development Corporation have made it clear that Russian regional research and production companies are also open for collaboration and joint projects. The forthcoming and the best opportunity to continue the dialogue and to consolidate the intentions will be the International Aviation and Space Salon held in Zhukovsky. It is no accident that Lower Saxony federal land and enterprises of other German regions will take active part in the Salon. “MAKS is a unique opportunity to strengthen the cooperation, the place to present cutting-edge technologies and solutions”, Mirja Schüller, a representative of BDLI, the German Aerospace Industries Federal Association, says. Just as before, in 2021 BDLI will be the official Organizer of Germany’s national exhibition pavilion at MAKS. No doubt that once more the exhibition will be full-blown and eventful, and the results of participation in the Salon will be impressive.