Iran Air’s Airliner Order

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Donald Trump’s announcement that he would like to decertify the Iran nuclear deal – if it really happens and that is far from certain – could reimpose sanctions on Iran. Which conceivably could stall Iran Air’s aircraft orders. When the sanctions were shelved Iran Air ordered lots of new aircraft including nearly 100 Airbuses and 80 Boeing aircraft.

Clearly the Boeing order would go back on the shelf if Trump managed to blockade Iran, but unfortunately for Airbus there’s probably enough American parts input to stop the Airbus orders as well. That’s even though the A330s and A350s will all have Rolls-Royce rather than GE engines.

▲ An Iran Air Airbus A300 like I flew on from Tehran to Shiraz back in 2004 and like the US Navy cruiser Vincennes shot down in 1988

My only recent flight with Iran Air was on one of their elderly Airbus A300s. It’s worth noting that if you want to study Iran-USA terrorism the key incident was the 1988 downing of Iran Air’s Flight 655, an Airbus A300 on its way into Dubai. The 290 passengers and crew – including 66 children – were all killed and the killer missile was delivered by the US Navy. Although many Iranians still see it as a terrorist incident, from the US perspective it was just military incompetence and the USA paid US$61.8 million in compensation. Bringing down IR655 is often compared with the Russian shooting down of Malaysia Airlines MH17 over Ukraine in 2014. In that disaster 298 passengers and crew were killed and Russia has yet to pay one rouble in compensation.