Iran to buy Boeing planes worth $17.6 billion

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Iran Air, the national carrier of Iran, intends to buy 80 Boeing passenger planes in different models worth $17.6 billion and lease another 29 of 737s, with deliveries estimated to begin as early as next year, the Boeing Co. has revealed.

Boeing’s proposed deal with Iran Air is potentially one of the most significant economic outcomes of the international nuclear agreement with Iran that took effect at the start of the year in January, which rescinded or eased many sanctions in exchange for Iran’s verifiable commitments to peaceful nuclear projects.

In February, Boeing was granted approval from the US government to explore resuming sales to Iran after US sanctions were partially lifted in January.

Iran has also reached an agreement with Airbus, Boeing’s competitor, to acquire more than 100 aircraft.

According to istathmir reports, the sale and lease of the Boeing aircraft will constitute the biggest American business transaction with Iran since the 1979 Islamic revolution.

Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has expressed hopes that the deal with the US plane maker would speed up finalization of a $27 billion contract with Airbus to buy 118 aircraft.

The sales will only go ahead after receiving export licences from the US Treasury for the significant American technology used in both Boeing and Airbus airliners.

Most of the planes on order are likely to replace older ones that could not be replaced due to sanctions.

Iran Air, which has a fleet including Airbus’s original A300 and Fokker NV 100s from the defunct Dutch plane maker, has also ordered 45 single-aisle A320s, among them 24 Neos, together with the 737 Max, Boeing’s re-engined narrow-body, according to the newspaper reports.

The head of Iran’s Civil Aviation Organisation has confirmed that Iran had reached a deal to buy 100 planes from Boeing, and the two sides are awaiting approval by US Treasury authorities.

He said the reported value of $17 billion for the purchase is still not finalized yet and that more details would be revealed after further negotiations.

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