Iranian reports hint at huge Boeing jet deal

Image: Boeing 787
A 787 jet takes shape at Boeing’s plant in Everett, Wash. (GeekWire photo by Alan Boyle)

Reports from Tehran suggest that Iran’s flag carrier airline has struck a deal to purchase jetliners from the Boeing Co., which would mark a milestone in U.S. commercial relations with the Islamic Republic.

“In coming days, details of the deal with this company will be announced,” the semi-official Mehr news agency quoted Abbas Akhoundi, Iran’s minister of roads and urban development, as saying today.

The Reuters news agency quoted unnamed sources as saying the deal calls for Iran Air to acquire more than 100 Boeing jets, from the company directly and from leasing companies. Iran Air operates under the umbrella of Akhoundi’s ministry.

Such an arrangement would match Iran Air’s provisional agreement to purchase 118 Airbus jets worth as much as $27 billion. Reuters said that the Airbus agreement, announced in January, still requires export licenses from the United States due to the use of significant U.S. technology.

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By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributor to GeekWire and Universe Today, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," past president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing.

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