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EghtesadOnline: Iranian aviation company Aseman Airlines has entered into an agreement with Rolls Royce to purchase up to 100 aircraft engines, according to a statement from the country’s Ministry of Roads and Urban Development.

Aseman is set to purchase 100 Tay-650 “Fokker” engines from Rolls Royce and enter into agreements with the UK manufacturer concerning the provision of spare parts, London-based media outlet Al-Araby Al-Jadeed reported.

Rolls Royce Tay engines, of which there are four derivatives (the 611, 620, 650, and 6510), are used in Gulfstream, Fokker-100 and some Boeing 727 aircraft.

It marks a major shift for Iranian airliners that have suffered under years of sanctions when companies struggled to get new aircraft or spare parts making travel by air dangerous, according to Financial Tribune.

A nuclear deal with world powers, including the US, has seen western companies flock to oil-rich Iran.

Aseman is also in talks with German aviator TUI over the lease of three Boeing 738 aircraft for a period of three years and has already entered into an agreement with Lufthansa concerning the maintenance of aircraft in its existing fleet. 

Last week, it was reported that the Iranian airline is set to lease seven A320neo from an undisclosed Irish firm following the signing of a memorandum of understanding between Iran’s Civil Aviation Organization and the Irish Aviation Authority in Tehran the week before.

According to a CAO statement issued after the signing ceremony, the agreement will see the IAA help extend technical expertise and assistance in the areas of flight operations management, airworthiness and aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul to Iranian counterparts.  

Once ratified, it will also simplify the means by which Iranian carriers can lease aircraft from Irish lessors by improving Iran’s air safety oversight procedures, Switzerland-based airline intelligence provider Ch-aviation reported. 

Following the dropping of sanctions on Iran in September 2016, the US Treasury granted Airbus and Boeing licenses to deliver planes to Tehran. It is expected that nine planes will be delivered before the end of the current Iranian year on March 20.

Iran has also entered into agreements with Lufthansa over the supply of aircraft to the country’s carriers. In total, plans to purchase over 200 aircraft are said to be in place and are set to cost billions of dollars.

However, Tehran is wary, as the White House’s approach to the nuclear deal could change after Donald Trump’s rise to office. 

But in signs that Tehran is pushing on with purchases to help modernize its outdated air travel infrastructure on Friday, Iran’s Ministry of Roads and Urban Development also stated on its website that it had entered into the final stages of negotiations with French companies Thales Group concerning the purchase of radar equipment worth $11 million and airport developments.

Additional talks, said the ministry, were also ongoing with Dutch airport consultancy firm NACO over the modernization and development of Tehran’s airport.  

Iran Aseman Airlines’ fleet consists of three A320-200s, one A340-300, four ATR72-200s, two ATR72-500s, three B727-200s, one B727-200(F), two B737-400s and 19 Fokker 100s.

Iran Aviation Rolls Royce Iran Airlines Aseman Airlines