Ukraine's Antonov plans to compete aggressively against Russia in the market for affordable military transportation aircraft with its AN-78 and AN-132D planes which are in an advanced stage of development and testing.
The Ukraine’s firm which is now incorporated into the state concern Ukroboronprom, intends to manufacture at least 70 planes within the next five years. Further a detailed marketing plan has been prepared for the Antonov state enterprise, Ukroboronprom’s press service said Sunday.
The Ukrainian planes will compete with Russia's Ilushin and proposed new aircraft under the Sukhoi banner. Russia has been falling behind in the global military aircraft ever since its access to Antonov was severed.
Antonov seeks to sell 20 AN-178 planes to countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), in Asian, Africa and Turkey. It also aims to regain its foothold on the regional passenger planes market.
Before 2015, Russia was Ukraine’s major partner in the aircraft building sector. Russian-made components were widely used to build Ukrainian planes. In 2015, Antonov made only two planes, an AN-148 and an AN-158, which had Russian-made components.
In 2016, owing to the fact that all cooperation ties with Russia had been severed, the company made no planes at all. Antonov withdrew from the UAC-Antovon Russian-Ukrainian joint venture that was developing a series of new planes, Russain publication, Sputnik said.
Antonov specializes in the development, production and servicing of transport, passenger and special-purpose planes, including An-32, An-148, An-158, An-74, An-124, An-70, An-225, and the future An-178.
In March 2017, the An-132D, a modernized modification of the An-32, made its maiden flight. The aircraft is a cooperative project between Ukraine and Saudi Arabia. It is said to compete with the US C-130 and Airbus A400M.