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Iran awaiting Airbus move after Trump’s JCPOA exit

Muslim Times(Web Desk) – Iran says it has asked Airbus to announce its decision regarding a massive plane deal it signed with Tehran after US President Donald Trump announced to reimpose sanctions on the Islamic Republic.

Asghar Fakhrieh-Kashan, a senior advisor to Iran’s Roads and Urban Development Minister Abbas Akhoundi, was quoted as saying Friday that Iran expected Airbus to respond back within the next days.

Fakhrieh-Kashan, who is largely believed to have played a key role in sealing the plane deal, said Iran expected the decision by the France-based aviation giant to realize the fate of two additional planes it was supposed to deliver before the end of 2018.

Airbus signed a deal to sell Iran 100 jetliners worth about $19 billion at list prices in December 2016. It has delivered three planes so far.

However, the fate of the deal plunged into uncertainty this Tuesday after Trump said Washington would return sanctions that had banned plane sales to Iran for decades among other restrictions.

Trump made the announcement after he said he would pull the US out of a 2015 nuclear agreement with Iran – the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

Based on the JCPOA, certain US-led sanctions against Iran were lifted in return for measures taken by the country to restrict certain aspects of its nuclear energy program.

“The agreement [with Airbus] did not predict the withdrawal [of any signatory] from the JCPOA,” Fakhrieh-Kashan told Iran’s Fars news agency. “We were expected to have such a prediction either.”

Nevertheless, he said certain mechanisms had been included in case plane manufacturers fail to make their due deliveries in their deals with Iran.

“Iran made no down payment to plane manufacturers such as Airbus and Boeing so that no damages are inflicted on us if the deals are cancelled.”

Following Trump’s JCPOA exit, US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said that licenses for Boeing and Airbus to sell planes to Iran will be revoked. This triggered speculations in media that the aviation giants would suffer $39 billion as a result of lost Iran deals.

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