November 3, 2018 / 2:59 PM / 9 days ago

IranAir looking for planes not needing U.S. sales permit - website

FILE PHOTO: A Sukhoi Superjet 100 regional jet is seen on the tarmac at the MAKS 2017 air show in Zhukovsky, outside Moscow, Russia, July 18, 2017. REUTERS/Sergei Karpukhin/File Photo

DUBAI (Reuters) - IranAir is looking to buy planes from any company not requiring U.S. sales permits and may consider Russia’s Sukhoi Superjet 100, the flag carrier’s head was quoted as saying, as Iran tries to renew its aging fleet despite facing U.S. sanctions.

The U.S. Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC)revoked licenses for Boeing Co (BA.N) and Airbus (AIR.PA) to sell passenger jets to Iran after President Donald Trump pulled the United States out of the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement in May and reimposed sanctions.

“We welcome any (company) which is able to provide the planes needed by IranAir. We even have gone after planes such as Sukhoi 100 or planes made by non-European countries,” said IranAir Chief Executive Farzaneh Sharafbafi, quoted by Iran’s Roads Ministry website.

Most modern commercial planes have more than 10 percent in U.S. parts, the threshold for needing U.S. Treasury approval. But Russian officials have been reported as saying Sukhoi is working on reducing the number of U.S. parts in the hopes of winning an Iranian order for up to 100 aircraft.

“We will consider plane purchases if these companies can sell planes to Iran without an OFAC license, and are willing to negotiate,” Sharafbafi added. She gave no further details.

IranAir had ordered 200 passenger aircraft - 100 from Airbus, 80 from Boeing and 20 from Franco-Italian turboprop maker ATR. All the deals were dependent on U.S. licenses because of the heavy use of American parts in commercial planes.

Reporting by Dubai newsroom, Additional reporting by Tim Hepher in Paris; Editing by Edmund Blair

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