Russia’s flagship carrier recruits first ever foreign pilot

1062609Russia’s Aeroflot flagship carrier has recruited the first foreign pilot in the history of Russian civil aviation.

German Klaus Dieter Rolfs is the first foreign pilot to work for Aeroflot. According to a statement from the company, procedures are under way to hire two more candidates for aircraft commander, citizens of the Czech Republic and Germany.

Aeroflot Director General Vitaly Savelyev said it was a historic day. “It is very important that owing to the recruitment of foreign aircraft commanders, we will sharply increase the turn-out of our own pilots who will fly with foreigners as second pilots, gaining experience for passing exams for aircraft commander qualification,” he said.

According to Savelyev, despite a slowdown in growth rates of air passengers’ conveyance, growth continued and aircraft commanders were in demand.

Klaus Dieter Rolfs said, “Russia has very good prospects as a market of air conveyance, the work of a pilot is in great demand and is highly valued”. He also commended working conditions, saying they were better than in any other airline he had experienced.

In line with changes to the Air Code of the Russian Federation, from July 21 Russian airlines are allowed to hire foreign citizens in flight crews. A government instruction says up to 200 foreigners a year may be hired as aircraft commanders.