|[Published: Sunday August 05 2018]
Iran getting new planes ahead of US sanctions
TEHRAN 5 Aug (ANA) - Less than 48 hours before renewed US sanction go into effect, the flag carrier of Iran has said that five new planes from the French-Italian firm ATR will soon arrive in Tehran as part of efforts to replenish the country's ageing fleet.
"Based on existing agreements, five new ATR aircraft will land at Mehrabad Airport at 9am (04:30 GMT) tomorrow (Sunday)," Iran Air announced on Saturday on its Telegram channel.
The first round of US sanctions is set to snap back after a wind-down period expires on Monday, August 6.
While ATR is based in Europe, it also does business in the US, and is thus subject to the sanctions.
Years of US sanctions have prevented Iran from purchasing new jets, or even buying spare parts for those aircraft, and those restrictions have been partly blamed for the country's extremely poor aviation record.
Those limits were only eased after the signing of the 2015 nuclear deal.
The new ATR-72600 planes are part of a deal for 20 new aircraft that Iran Air agreed to buy in April 2017, of which, eight have been delivered so far.
But the deal was thrown into doubt by US President Donald Trump's decision in May to withdraw from the agreement between Tehran and major powers, and reimpose sanctions.
The first phase of renewed sanctions includes blocks on financial transactions and imports of raw materials, as well as sanctions on Iran's automotive sector, commercial aircraft purchases and even the carpet industry.
Remaining sanctions - including on Iran's oil and gas sector and central bank - will resume in early November.(ANA)
FA/ANA/5 August 2018-------