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Laden with cash, the Airbus fleet does the Tehran banking run[/caption]
The not-quite-comprehensive ending of sanctions against Iran has also ended the Airbus A380 sales drought, with Iran Air signing for 12 of the biggest passenger jet flying.
However in the official announcements this is almost an afterthought, with the European consortium's sales agreement including all of its offerings from the single aisle A320 family through to the about to arrive A330 NEO and similarly, the -1000 version of the A350 line.
Iran has struggled to maintain a fleet of older western and Russian jets through the prolonged period of UN mandated trade sanctions aimed at ending its nuclear weapons development program.
The jets signed for are 21 current A320 CEOs, 24 new engine tech A320 NEOs, 27 current model A330s, 18 A330-900 NEOs, 16 A350-1000s and 12 A380s.
Iran’s various airlines currently operate a combined 84 Airbus jetliners. In addition to those with Iran Air, the Iranian carriers are: ATA Airlines, Atrak Air, Iran Aseman Airlines, Mahan Air, Meraj Airlines, Qeshm Airlines, Taban Airline and Zagros Airlines.
Iran Air's new fleet will have an effect on Emirates, which transfers some business, leisure and NGO traffic between Tehran and other Iranian centres and the world via its very large hub airport at Dubai.
But will that effect be compensated for by overall growth in the other traffic streams that flow through Dubai?
The re-fleeting of Iran Air and other Iranian carriers will not happen overnight, and substantial economic expansion is forecast in the middle east, central Asia and of course India, with strong passenger activity to the UAE in its own right as well as to cities beyond.
If the Iran economy surges, this may well be about much more than a redistribution of current airline activity.
The All Nippon Airways order for three A380s was confirmed today. They will be delivered from 2019 and powered by Rolls-Royce engines.