(Adds airline chairman comments, details)
PARIS, March 10 IranAir has taken delivery of
its second Western jet under a nuclear sanctions deal with major
powers, an Airbus A330 long-haul aircraft, the European
The A330 was handed over in Toulouse, France on Friday and
joins a smaller A321 delivered to Iran earlier this year.
The A330 is expected to be used initially on European routes
and on flights to Beijing and Kuala Lumpur.
At a later date, IranAir plans to use new long-haul jets to
reopen routes previously closed because it had grounded some
ageing Boeing 747s, IranAir Chairman Farhad Parvaresh told
Delivery of the new A330 aircraft was held up by last-minute
talks over its Rolls-Royce engines and spare parts, but
comes in time for the Iranian New Year later in March.
The 238-seat aircraft delivered on Friday was originally
built for Latin American airline Avianca but was bought back by
Airbus after that airline negotiated a reduction in its orders.
Industry sources say Iran is expected to have negotiated a
competitive price to take the surplus jet off Airbus's hands.
Uncertainty remains over the timing of the rest of the
orders as banks shy away from deals with Iran, fearing a
"snapback" of international sanctions or U.S. fines if they are
deemed to be breaking U.S. sanctions that remain in force.
"We are working very closely with Airbus and we are both
very keen to stay on the schedule and to the contract that we
made together," Parvaresh said.
IranAir is also in talks to finalise a deal to buy 20
aircraft from European turboprop maker ATR.
(Reporting by Tim Hepher; Editing by Susan Fenton and Edmund