Russian state-owned industrial giant Rostec has said it is prepared to undertake the repair and modernisation of Progress D-18T engines powering the An-124s operated in the country, RIA Novosti has reported. As such, Russia would bypass the need to involve the engine manufacturer, Motor Sich, and Antonov Design Bureau in the process.

Both Motor Sich and Antonov are Ukraine-based. The cooperation between the countries has been increasingly difficult since early 2014, when Russia annexed Crimea and started supporting an insurgency in Donbass in eastern Ukraine.

According to the ch-aviation fleets module, out of the twenty-two currently active An-124s, most are operated in Russia. The world's largest operator of the type is Volga-Dnepr Airlines with six active units and a further six inactive. A further eleven An-124s are operated by the Russian military, namely 224th Flight Unit and Voyennaya Transportnaya Aviatsiya.

Particularly Volga-Dnepr has been affected by the political standoff. In July, news broke out that the carrier was reportedly under investigation in Ukraine for unlicenced maintenance and changes to its An-124s. Volga-Dnepr subsequently denied any knowledge about such a probe.