DUSHANBE, January 3, 2014, Asia-Plus -- Tajik Ministry of Transport (MoT) is making preparations for celebration of the 90th anniversary of Tajik civil aviation, which will be celebrated on September 3, 2014.

This issue was discussed at a MoT meeting that took place in Dushanbe on January 2.

Besides, Tajikistan chairs the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) this year and a SCO summit will take place in Dushanbe on September 14 this year.

Speaking at the meeting, Minister of Transport Khairullo Asoyev ordered all airports of the country to take adequate measures in order to properly prepare themselves for the summit.

Tajik Air (Tajikistan Airlines) started operations in September 3, 1924 as Tajik Aviation.  Its first route was Bukhara to Dushanbe, served by Junkers F.13 aircraft.  It is the seventh oldest airline still in operation.

In March 1937 the company was reorganized as the Tajik Territorial Civil Air Fleet Administration (TTCAFA). In 1945 it received Junkers Ju-52 and new Lisunov Li-2 aircraft, the first flight with the latter was operated on the Stalinabad (now Dushanbe) –Moscow route.  In 1951, it added its first Antonov AN-2, and in 1952, an Ilyushin Il-12 joined the fleet and launched Stalinabad –Sochi services.  Between 1956 and 1964 TTCAFA added the Mi-4 helicopter, Il-14, Il-18 and An-6, which was an advanced version of the An-2 capable of flying at a higher altitude.  In 1956 an An-6 of TTCAFA piloted by B.M. Vorobyov landed on the frozen Lake Sarez for the first time.

The first jet aircraft joined the airline in the 1970s, these included Tupolev TU-154 and Yakovlev Yak-40, as well as An-26 and An-28.  By 1988 TTCAFA was changed to Tajik Civil Aviation Administration (TCAA) incorporating new management and planning conditions.  The new company received first honors in the USSR as far as efficient usage of the An-28 and Yak-40 was concerned.  In 1990 and 1991 the fleet was expanded further with addition of new aircraft and helicopters.

After reorganization of the Ministry of Civil Aviation the State Air Company of the Republic of Tajikistan (SART) was founded.  On March 2, 1992 the Tajikistan aircraft crews began to fly under the emblem “Tojikiston” and in a short space of time they opened up the flights to the United Arab Emirates, Pakistan, Iran, India, Saudi Arabia, China, Turkey, Germany.

In an effort to improve the public management system, in 2004 the SART “Tojikiston” was reorganized into the State Unitary Aviation Enterprise (SUAE) “Tojikiston”. It is a commercial organization with its severalty and property being under its economic authority.  On September 5, 2006, the Tajik government passed the resolution “On the State Unitary Aviation Enterprise “Tojikiston.”  By the government’s resolution the SUAE “Tojikiston” was renamed “Tajik Air” and a new charter was granted to it.

To try to overcome the decline, the airline, with assistance from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) undertook a technical study of Western type aircraft like Airbus-320 and Boeing 737 and several Boeings were inducted on lease replacing Soviet era aircraft.

In 2009, Tajik Air was restructured and several separate enterprises were established: the State Unitary Aviation Enterprise (SUAE) Tajik Air; the State Unitary Enterprise (SUE) Dushanbe International Airport; SUE Khujand International Airport; SUE Kulob International Airport; SUE Qurghon Teppa International Airport; SUE Tajikairnavigation; and Fuel Supply Company.