While still well below the scale of Airbus or Boeing, Russia took a big step forward today in its quest to revive its position in the aeronautical industry with the roll out of the Sukhoi Superjet 100 – a 78 to 98 seat regional airliner designed to compete with established aircraft lines from companies such as Embraer and Bombardier. The Superjet is being manufactured with a major contribution from Italian firm Finmeccanica, including an after sales service contract for its subsidiary Alenia Aeronautica. Safran’s Snecma unit is co-operating with Russia’s NPO Saturn to produce the engines, while the avionics will be fit by French electronics firm Thales. Boeing is also said to give “symbolic” support to the development of the aircraft, following a titanium joint venture signed with a Russian company a little over a month ago. The Superjet project is very much a presidential initiative, promoting the new state held aeronautical champion known as the United Aviation Corporation, which is under the direction of First Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Ivanov.