Stranded Russian plane owes $305,000 in fees, not leaving Pearson Airport in Mississauga anytime soon

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Published December 12, 2022 at 12:31 pm

Russian Cargo Plane in Mississauga

A large Russian-owned cargo plane that’s been grounded at Pearson Airport in Mississauga since Feb. 27 isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, says Canada’s transport minister.

As of today (Dec. 12), the Antonov An-124 aircraft, the world’s largest production cargo plane, owes about $305,655 in “parking fees.”

And the meter continues to run. The tab will continue to grow by $1,065.60 each day (74 cents per minute), according to Pearson’s 2022 aeronautical charges and fees schedule.

The fees are collected by the Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA), which runs Pearson, and at the current rate, the parking tab will top $400,000 by mid-March of 2023.

In an interview with insauga.com, federal Transport Minister and Mississauga Centre MP Omar Alghabra said on Friday that the stranded aircraft won’t be going anywhere using Canada’s airspace until the Russian/Ukraine war is over.

And Transport Canada also said earlier that the cargo plane doesn’t appear to be going anywhere soon.

The huge aircraft landed at Pearson on the morning of Feb. 27, just before the Canadian government declared the country’s airspace closed to all Russian-owned planes in the wake of the invasion of Ukraine.

Federal Transport Minister Omar Alghabra says the stranded Russian cargo plane will stay where it is until further notice.

A Transport Canada spokesperson told insauga.com in August that the Russian-registered aircraft will remain grounded for the time being.

The federal body has provided no further updates.

A GTAA spokesperson said in August that “with regard to the parking costs, we do not publicly disclose the terms of the GTAA’s commercial dealings with other entities.”

However, Pearson’s 2022 aeronautical charges and fees schedule is available on the GTAA website.

It’s not known if the owners of the large plane have paid any of the GTAA fees at this point or what, if any, arrangements have been made with Pearson to pay the charges.

The massive plane was reportedly bringing a shipment of COVID-19 test kits from China to Pearson, via Russia and then Anchorage, Alaska, where it apparently stopped for refuelling just before its late-February landing in Mississauga.

Unless the aircraft receives an exemption from the Canadian government to allow it to travel home via Canadian airspace, it will remain at Pearson until further notice.

The cargo plane, registered to Volga-Dnepr Airlines, is reportedly one of a fleet of 12 such aircraft.

Below is one of the initial social media reports back in February that identified the stranded cargo plane.

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