Iran is keenly interested in purchasing airplanes from Boeing and Airbus. After the lifting of the decades-long sanctions, the country appears quite eager to sign large procurement deals.
After the sanctions, imposed by United Nations, were officially lifted last week, Iran hasn’t wasted time in showing interest in procuring large commercial jetliners to upgrade its severely aging fleet. The country has also shown interest in making multi-million dollar deals that will propel the country into the 21st century, as the crippling sanctions didn’t allow the country to progress at a regular pace. The population of 80 million people has just become open to global commerce, and companies are justifiably excited at this new customer base that’s eager to experience the products the West has to offer.
However, American companies that are keen to do business with the newly opened market can’t rush just yet. This is because the sanctions imposed by the United States are still in place. Moreover, the country’s routine insistence on showing its stockpile of missiles and the massive bunkers storing them has kept America on edge. On multiple occasions in recent times, Iran has adamantly risked violations of the conditions set in the delicate nuclear deal that the country signed with six world powers.
Iran is seriously considering buying planes from U.S. manufacturer Boeing and French company Airbus as it looks to upgrade its aging fleet. Interestingly, Iran’s current president, Hassan Rouhani, is already in Europe to convince the big companies to invest in the country, reported Reuters. Incidentally, it was Rouhani, who was elected in 2013, who spearheaded the deal with the primary intention of ending Iran’s long-term isolation. By agreeing to curb the country’s nuclear program, he managed to get substantial reductions in sanctions imposed by the U.S., E.U., and United Nations.
Iran’s deputy transport minister, Asghar Fakhrieh Kashan, confirmed the country’s intention to buy about 100 aircraft, reported BBC News. Interestingly, it seems the country is already in negotiations with Boeing’s competitor Airbus to procure 114 aircraft.
Although the sanctions imposed by the United States are still in place, Boeing could apply for a special waiver to deal with the country. However, the company has been quite cautious and mentioned there are “many steps” before it decides to sell aircraft to Iran. Airbus, on the other hand, may officially sign a deal within this week itself during Hassan Rouhani’s visit to Paris, implied Iranian media.
The sanctions may not have been lifted completely, but the move does allow American companies to import certain highly-sought products from the Middle Eastern countries like carpets, caviar, and pistachios. Before the sanctions, American companies were able to do business in Iran by obtaining special licenses through the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control, reported Tribe Live.
Tech companies, such as Apple, are equally interested in dealing with Iran but are quite concerned about the lax-to-non-existent Intellectual Property (IP) laws within the country. However, that hasn’t stopped the country from looking towards the Middle Eastern country to seek distributors for final products like mobile phones, laptops, and other digital products.
After nearly four decades, the diplomatic relations have opened between Washington and Tehran. This is certainly historic, point out experts. But there are bound to be several hurdles before smooth trade relations are established.
Besides the blatant display of its missile stockpile, Tehran certainly hasn’t made it easy for it to be considered a reliable ally. It recently complicated matters by detaining 10 American sailors who were captured by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard after their two small boats drifted into Iranian territorial waters last week, reported CBC News. However, the fact that a few calls from U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry to his counterpart, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, secured their release shows the thawing of relations.
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