Russia's top air carriers set to join forces as Aeroflot takes over Transaero

IndustriesAssociated Press

Russia's second-largest passenger airline, Transaero, says it will be taken over by the country's top carrier, Aeroflot.

Transaero says in a statement that its "consolidation ... into the Aeroflot group" has been approved by a government commission headed by Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov.

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Financial terms were not disclosed.

Transaero has been struggling with debt at a time when Russia's economic problems have buffeted the airline industry. The company had debts of 67.5 billion rubles ($1 billion) as of June 30, according to its report for the first half of the year.

State-controlled Aeroflot told Russia's Interfax news agency that "Transaero's activities will be restructured and integrated at the operational level."