0615 GMT July 17, 2019
The head of Iran’s Civil Aviation Organization (CAO) says many aircraft manufacturers have visited the country in the past year, even before the recent Tehran-P5+1 statement in Switzerland on the Iranian nuclear program, which laid the ground for further negotiations toward a comprehensive nuclear deal.
Alireza Jahangirian said these companies have been in talks with Iranian airlines and the CAO over Iran’s air transport.
The deputy minister of Roads and Urban Development further noted that Iran currently has some 140 commercial aircraft in operation, but needs to almost triple that figure between 400 and 500 airplanes within the next 20 years.
He also said some of the Iranian commercial air fleet have been grounded over a lack of spare parts and maintenance service due to sanctions.
Back in February, Iran said it had concluded three contracts with the US aviation giant Boeing after it signed the Geneva nuclear agreement with the P5+1 group of countries (the US, France, Britain, Russia, China and Germany) in the late 2013.
Last year, major US aerospace manufacturers, Boeing and General Electric, applied for export licenses in order to sell airliner parts to Iran following the November 2013 deal.
In the past decade, Iran has witnessed several major air accidents blamed on its aging aircraft due to the US sanctions that prevent Iran from buying aircraft spare parts.