Iran is celebrating a small advance in its quest for renewed trade and investment after the July 2015 nuclear agreement.
A second Airbus A330-200 passenger jet arrived in Tehran on Saturday, to be operated by the Islamic Republic’s national flag carrier Iran Air.
The Airbus is part of a deal for 100 jets, pursued since President Hassan Rouhani’s trip to Paris in January 2016, days after implementation of the nuclear agreement with the 5+1 Powers (US, UK, France, Germany, China, and Russia) was announced.
Initially, Iran purchased 180 planes, but completion has been hindered by financial and banking issues amid ongoing US restrictions. The worries over payment have also stalled an October 2016 deal to obtain 80 planes from Boeing.
Possibly because of these concerns, Airbus has not delivered any of its largest planes, A370s, preferring to dispatch the two A-330s.
The Rouhani Government is hoping to promote the revival of Iran’s aging passenger fleet, which has suffered a series of crashes in recent years, as part of its promise for Iranian economic recovery. The President faces a re-election challenge in May.
TOP PHOTO: The Airbus A330-200 on the tarmac of Tehran’s Mehrabad Airport on Saturday