News ID: 235687
Published: 0410 GMT December 12, 2018

Iran needs 500 planes, mulls Sukhoi: Official

Iran needs 500 planes, mulls Sukhoi: Official

Iran needs some 500 planes and would likely back buying the Sukhoi Superjet 100 if Russia is willing to sell them to its airlines, a civil aviation official said on Wednesday.

Iran needs to upgrade its aging passenger fleet and is seeking to avert US sanctions on Tehran, Reuters reported.

The US Treasury has revoked licenses for Boeing Co. and Airbus to sell passenger jets to Iran after US President Donald Trump pulled the United States out of the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement in May and reimposed sanctions.

Most modern commercial planes have more than 10 percent in US parts, the threshold for needing US Treasury approval.

However, Russian officials have been reported as saying Sukhoi is working on reducing the number of US parts in the hopes of winning an Iranian order for up to 100 aircraft.

"If the Iranian airlines want to use this aircraft (Superjet 100) and the seller is willing to sell it to Iran, the Civil Aviation Organization is ready to issue its final comment on this aircraft," said Ali Abedzadeh, the head of Iran's Civil Aviation Organization.

"But this aircraft has adhered to world standards and is flying currently, therefore there is no reason for us to reject it," Abedzadeh said.

Flag-carrier Iran Air had ordered 200 passenger aircraft — 100 from Airbus, 80 from Boeing and 20 from Franco-Italian turboprop maker ATR before US licenses were revoked.

"The airlines have proposals for plane purchases and we are trying to devise regulations that will ease their aircraft imports. Considering Iran's very large market, we need 500 planes now," Abedzadeh said.

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