The government of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea has said it was considering ordering new aircraft from Russia for its flag carrier Air Koryo (JS, Pyongyang), TASS has reported.

"At a meeting in the DPRK Ministry of Foreign Affairs, we raised the issue of civil aviation and flight safety. The Korean side expressed interest in acquiring new Russian planes," vice speaker of the State Duma (parliament) and head of a delegation to North Korea Sergei Neverov said.

Neverov underlined that the modernisation of Air Koryo's fleet would improve the airline's safety.

According to the ch-aviation fleets module, Air Koryo currently operates exclusively Russian- and Ukrainian-made aircraft. Its fleet includes two An-148-100s, three Il-62M, three Il-76TDs, two Tu-134B3s, two Tu-154Bs, and two Tu-204s. According to Russian sources, it also operates four An-24s and one Il-18.

North Korea is currently not allowed to buy aircraft from abroad due to the UN sanctions. The country can only import spare parts required for the safe operation and the maintenance of airworthiness for its existing fleet.

Vladivostok is one of only three international destinations currently served by Air Koryo and the only one outside China. The carrier is reportedly also considering launching charter flights to Ulan-Ude in the near future.