Iran is claiming the completion of a year-long agreement for the purchase of passenger planes from France’s Airbus. However, the arrangements appear to be curbed in both the timing and scale of the deal.
The Islamic Republic’s flag carrier, Iran Air, said on Sunday that a contract for 100 aircraft had been confirmed.
However, amid continued US sanctions — raising questions over the financing of the deal — Iran Air’s managing director Farhad Parvaresh said only seven or eight planes would be delivered in 2017.
Parvaresh also said the $25 billion contract was not reduced to no more than $10 billion, with the dropping of Airbus A380s — the world’s largest passenger planes — from the deal.
President Rouhani announced the initial agreement for 118 planes during a trip to Paris in January, just after the announcement of implementation of the 2015 nuclear deal.
But uncertainty has continued over US financial restrictions which have remained in place. Because Airbus uses American components, it is subject to American punishment in the event it is found guilty of breaking sanctions.
The US Treasury has cleared the initial deal, but American restrictions also affect Iran’s ability to pay for the deliveries.
It was unclear on Sunday whether the reduced contract was because of the American sanctions or because of a $16.6 billion Iranian deal with the US company Boeing, confirmed last week.
Parvaresh said Iran Air will purchase 80 planes from Boeing, with the first arriving in April 2018.