MIDDLE EAST: Air cargo firms appeal UAE Antonov ban

UAE air cargo companies have joined forces to appeal against a decision by the General Civil Aviation Authority banning Antonov An-12 airplanes fromUAE airspace. The authority last week ordered all Antonov An-12 aeroplanes out of the country by today, citing safety concerns after a recent string of accidents involving the four-engine turboprop plane. In a […]


UAE air cargo companies have joined forces to appeal against a decision by the General Civil Aviation Authority banning Antonov An-12 airplanes fromUAE airspace.

The authority last week ordered all Antonov An-12 aeroplanes out of the country by today, citing safety concerns after a recent string of accidents involving the four-engine turboprop plane.

In a meeting yesterday with a civil aviation official, representatives of 14 air-cargo companies that use An-12s complained that the ban was unfair and said there was no evidence that the accidents were caused by technical problems with the planes.

“This is a claim that isn’t supported by any particular document or evidence,” said Alexander Smolin, general manager of Sky Support Service in Sharjah and a spokesman for the cargo companies. “This aircraft is as safe as any aircraft.”

Aviation authority officials said yesterday that they could not comment because of an ongoing investigation into the safety of the Ukrainian-manufactured aeroplane.

Although the companies claim the ban is permanent, it is understood GCAA officials told the daily newspaper Al Ittihad it would only be a temporary ban.

Mr Smolin said air-cargo companies would have trouble meeting today’s deadline to take the An-12s out of the UAE because they were under contract to such companies as DHL and UPS.