0629 GMT October 18, 2019
Four ATR 72-600 turboprop planes landed in Tehran’s Mehrabad International Airport on a direct flight from the French city of Toulouse.
The planes – the first from a total of 20 planes that are expected to be handed over to Iran – had been officially handed over to the country’s national flag-carrier airline Iran Air on Tuesday.
They brought the number of new planes in the Iranian aviation fleet to seven after earlier deliveries of three Airbus planes.
Iran expects to receive five more ATRs by the end of 2017.
The value of the deal that Iran Air has sealed with the company to purchase the planes is estimated to be around $500 million.
The planes – all ATR 72-600 – are twin-propeller aircraft that can carry 70 passengers.
Meanwhile, Iran’s Deputy Minister of Road and Urban Development for International Affairs Asghar Fakhrieh Kashan told the country’s IRNA state news agency that 15 percent to 20 percent of the pre-payment for the planes – equal to $400 million – had already been made by Iran. The rest of the due payments, he added, were made by foreign financers.
Iran Air Managing Director Farhad Parvaresh told reporters in Tehran last month that his company had an option to purchase another 20 planes from the French-Italian company.
On the same front, Iran’s Minister of Roads and Urban Development Abbas Akhoundi was quoted by the domestic media as saying in April that ATR planes would be mostly used for flights to Iran’s small airports.