By Sarah Byrne

FOR AIR charter services company Volga-Dnepr Airlines, the PNG LNG was an unusually large project.

Speaking with PNG Resources, Volga-Dnepr regional sales manager Georgy Sokolov said the previous time the company had worked on a project of this size was 15 years prior to its 2013 contract.

The group worked at the PNG LNG project for four months, organising the transportation of equipment and materials.

Looking back, Volga-Dnepr had learned a lot through working on a project with tight regulations and rigid deadlines, Mr Sokolov said.

Five years of planning resulted in the company’s first An-124 flight touching down on a purpose-built runway at Komo airfield on 3 May 2013.

A total of 88 cargo flights over 103 days transported 6,000 tons of equipment and materials to assist in the development of the PNG LNG project.

Mr Sokolov said the major challenges for the company were weather conditions, adhering to a strict deadline, the size of the cargo and having a plan in case the aircraft encountered a problem or needed maintenance.

Development at Volga-Dnepr vice president Dennis Gliznoutsa said the project was a complex and an interesting logistics challenge.

“We are proud to have worked in partnership with our colleagues at ExxonMobil and Deugro,” he said.

“Papua New Guinea is a country that has challenging climatic conditions, including highlands with frequent fog.”

“We are proud to have successfully and safely completed this project by overcoming all of these difficulties and by once again demonstrating our expertise in the safe delivery of unique and outsize cargo,” Mr Gliznoutsa said.