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Air Astana Retires First of Six Fokker 50s

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After almost eight years of reliable service with Air Astana, the first of six Fokker 50s in the fleet was retired earlier this month.

Since entering into operation on 27th April 2004, the aircraft had completed almost 34,000 flights during its lifetime with airline, serving short haul destinations.

 Three further Fokker 50s will be removed from service between June and August this year, with the last two aircraft remaining in service until spring 2013.

The new generation Embraer 190 is gradually taking over on domestic and international routes previously operated by the Fokker 50 fleet.

 By comparison to the Fokker 50 configuration of 50 economy class seats, the Embraer 190 is configured with 97 seats in a two class layout (nine in business and 88 in economy). The twin engine jet is optimised for medium range flights, with a maximum range of 4,500 km at a maximum cruise speed of 890 kph.

The Fokker 50 has proved to be an outstanding workhorse in developing new routes and has served Air Astana well over the past eight years. The aircraft has consistently demonstrated high reliability and performance on the short sectors, but the time has now come to replace it with the new Embraer 190, which offers greater speed, range, passenger comfort and operating efficiency, said Peter Foster, President of Air Astana.

Air Astanas Embraer 190 first entered service last year, with the fleet destined to grow to six aircraft by the end of 2012.

The airline currently operates a fleet of 25 aircraft comprising two Boeing 767-300, five Boeing 757-200, ten Airbus A321/A320/A319, three Embraer E-190 and five Fokker 50. The airline serves 22 domestic and 27 international destinations.

Air Astana is member of International Aviation and Transport Association IATA and is the only airline in Kazakhstan to hold European EASA / Part 145 certification. In September 2011, Air Astana passed its third IATA Operational Safety Audit (IOSA) without any findings.

Air Astana is a joint venture between the National Welfare Fund Samruk-Kazyna JSC and the British company, BAE Systems, with respective shares of 51% and 49%.

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