Jan 24 Iran has struck a provisional deal with Europe's Airbus to buy eight A-380 superjumbo planes to be delivered from 2019, the deputy transport minister told Reuters on Sunday.
A deal for 127, mainly new, aircraft which it hopes to complete this week also includes 16 A350 jets, Asghar Fakhrieh Kashan, deputy transport minister said in an interview on the sidelines of an aviation conference in Tehran.
Another Iranian official said the talks, which appear to have accelerated as President Hassan Rouhani prepares to visit Europe this week, included about 45 short-haul A320s and as many as 40 of its A330 wide-body jets.
So this leaves room for only 5-10 A340, what is somehow surprising for me because i had the impression that Iran will take most of the short-term available A340s.
Could an Iranian order be the push that the other airlines need in ordering the A380.( I.e. if they want them then maybe we should to.) Imay be looking at it from the wrong angle. But could happen.
Iran Air is hardly seen as a role model in the industry, no? Also, as I understand they want to offer affordable direct flights for Iranians living abroad, like in the US, so they don't go by Dubai (EK) or Istanbul (TK). EK is already massively invested in A380, while TK hasn't ordered it yet because they can't use it in IST. So I don't see any other airline affected by this decision, IF it is finalized like this.
Iran said Sunday it will buy 114 Airbus planes to revitalise its ageing fleet, in the first major commercial deal announced since the lifting of sanctions under its nuclear agreement.
Transport Minister Abbas Akhoundi said a deal on the purchase would be signed between national carrier Iran Air and Airbus during a visit to Paris this week by President Hassan Rouhani.
Rouhani will travel to Italy and France from Monday to Wednesday, on his first visit to Europe since the implementation of the deal curbing Tehran's nuclear activities in exchange for the lifting of punishing economic sanctions.
Rouhani has hailed the agreement as a "new chapter" for Iran as its economy returns to global markets.
Modernising the country's air fleet and infrastructure is a top priority, with Akhoundi saying Sunday that only 150 of the country's 250 planes are operational.
"We have been negotiating for 10 months" for the purchase of planes but "there was no way to pay for them because of banking sanctions", state media quoted Akhoundi as saying.
"We need 400 long- and mid-range and 100 short-range planes," he said.
He said the first batch of new planes would arrive in Iran by March 19 but provided no financial details of the deal with Airbus.
An Airbus spokesman declined to comment.
Akhoundi's deputy, Asghar Fakhrieh Kashan, told AFP that Iran "essentially wants to buy Airbus A320s, A321s and A330s".
"We will take delivery in 2016 and 2017 of Airbus A320s and A321s, with the A330s coming later," he said.
"From 2020, we will take delivery of Airbus A350s and A380s. We want eight A380s and 16 A350s."
The A380 is the world's largest passenger plane, a twin-deck four-engined long-haul aircraft.
On the cost of the contract, the deputy minister said the basic price had been fixed but it would be necessary to "add options for each aircraft".
Iran, with a population 79 million, has a good road network but still needs major transport upgrades, which Tehran hopes will boost tourism and trade.