Iran’s flag carrier 'Iran Air' has signed a much-awaited agreement with US aviation giant Boeing to purchase 80 planes.
The agreement envisages the purchase of 50 twinjet narrow-body Boeing 737 planes and 30 long-range wide-body 777 aircraft at a total cost of $16.6 billion.
Iran Air Managing Director Farhad Parvaresh was quoted by local media as saying that the planes would to be handed over to Iran within 10 years, adding that the first deliveries are expected in 2018.
Fletcher Barkdull, Boeing’s regional sales director, told IRNA that the company was happy to return to Iran after a hiatus of multiple decades.
Barkdull emphasized that the finalization of the plane purchase agreement with Iran Air had been carried out by virtue of the direct approval from the administration of US President Barack Obama.
Iran signed a basic plane purchase agreement with Boeing earlier this year. However, the agreement hit a bumpy road last month after US lawmakers approved a bill that banned the export, or re-export, of commercial aircraft to Iran by American financial institutions.
The country has signed another agreement with France’s aviation giant Airbus to purchase scores of planes.
The deal is yet to be finalized but it has already received the go-ahead from the US Treasury Department.
The Department's seal for Iran-Airbus agreement was necessary given that at least 10 percent of Airbus' components are made in the US which has imposed a series of economic sanctions against Iran for years now.
The US Treasury Department has also given the green light to Boeing to sell planes to Iran.