May 11, 2018 / 10:33 AM / 4 months ago

Iran aims to buy Airbus jets before sanctions window closes - official

PARIS, May 11 (Reuters) - Iran is in contact with European planemaker Airbus to try to use a narrow window available for business following this week's U.S. decision to withdraw from an international nuclear pact, said a senior official.

"We are in contact with Airbus and they are exploring all possibilities that might exist to take advantage of the limited time in front of us," said Asghar Fakhrieh-Kashan, senior advisor to Iran's Roads and Urban Development Minister.

"It all depends on European government support and policies," he told Reuters by telephone.

Iran also hopes to import more Franco-Italian ATR turboprops but there are some "technical issues", he added. ATR is a joint venture between Airbus and Italian group Leonardo.

Airbus said it had no immediate comment on the matter.

Fakhrieh-Kashan was quoted earlier as saying Airbus would announce soon whether it would sell planes to Tehran after the United States - which must approve the export of planes with a significant number of U.S. parts - said it would withdraw from a 2015 international nuclear deal with Iran.

White House National Security Adviser John Bolton said earlier this week that there would be "wind-down" periods of 90 to 180 days, and perhaps other durations, for existing Iranian contracts with companies, following President Donald Trump's decision to pull out of the 2015 Iran deal. (Reporting by Tim Hepher; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta and Laurence Frost)

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