Aeroflot (SU, Moscow Sheremetyevo) has postponed the opening of a connecting hub at Krasnoyarsk Yemelyanovo from March 29 until June, following a review of cost-cutting measures amid the travel chaos caused by the coronavirus pandemic, Kommersant reported.

“We plan to hold an official opening in June 2020,” said Aeroflot spokeswoman Yulia Spivakova. “Accordingly, changes will be made to the schedules of flights to Krasnoyarsk.”

Aeroflot initially announced its intention to create a hub in Krasnoyarsk, the third-largest city in Siberia after Novosibirsk and Omsk, in summer 2018. In March 2019, at the Krasnoyarsk Economic Forum, Aeroflot’s deputy general director for strategy and marketing, Andrey Panov, said that by the time the hub begins to operate, the carrier would station five SSJ 100/95s there and several A320s or B737s. It has now settled on a mix of B737-800 and SSJs.

Initially, the airline planned direct links with cities in China and Southeast Asia and later to Western Europe, so that by 2023 it aimed to carry one million people through the hub, with 12 aircraft based there.

Sources confirmed to Kommersant that given the conditions in the market, for Aeroflot “it doesn’t make sense to open a new hub because there will simply be nobody to carry through it.”

From March 29, the start of the Summer 2020 schedules, the flag carrier had planned to connect Krasnoyarsk to 12 cities, according to the ch-aviation capacities module, to Moscow Sheremetyevo (28x weekly), Irkutsk Int'l, Novosibirsk (14x weekly), Bratsk, Ekaterinburg, Khabarovsk, Omsk, St. Petersburg, Tomsk, Tyumen (7x weekly), Yakutsk (6x weekly), Adler/Sochi (5x weekly), and Simferopol (4x weekly).

Its Pobeda (DP, Moscow Vnukovo) subsidiary operates flights to Krasnoyarsk from Moscow Vnukovo (7x weekly) and Adler/Sochi (1x weekly).