Iran eyes Boeing plane purchases as sanctions end
Iran is considering buying planes from US manufacturer Boeing as it moves to upgrade its fleet following the removal of UN sanctions.
Iran’s deputy transport minister Asghar Fakhrieh Kashan told Reuters that Iran is interested in buying 100 aircraft.
UN sanctions were lifted a week ago, allowing Airbus to negotiate a deal to sell 114 aircraft to Iran.
US trade sanctions on Iran remain in place, but Boeing could apply for a special waiver.
However, last week Boeing said there are “many steps” before it decides to sell aircraft to Iran.
The Airbus deal will have an official signing when Iranian President Hassan Rouhani visits Paris on Wednesday, according to Iranian media.
The average age of Iran’s commercial airliners is is almost 27 years, according to airfleets.net.
European regulators have banned all but 12 of Iran Air’s fleet from using European Union airspace, because the airline has failed to show that its aircraft meet international safety standards.
Iran Air’s website says it has a fleet of 43 jets. The company also runs a cargo operation and a low-cost carrier.
Iran’s transport minister Abbas Akhoundi was quoted by Iranian media as saying that only 150 planes are operational out of a total of 250.
He also said that 400 medium-to-long range planes are needed and 100 short-range jets and he expects the first batch of new Airbus jets to arrive by late March.