Franco-Italian turboprop manufacturer ATR has received authorisation from the US Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) in April to supply vital spare parts to the Iranian flag carrier to keep its fleet of 13 ATR 72-600s airworthy. The news that the US agreed to lift sanctions against Iran to allow the spares to be shipped earlier this year received no media coverage.
Speaking to Air Transport World magazine, an unnamed ATR spokesperson said the manufacturer “was granted a license for the support of the Iran Air fleet from OFAC”. The license is said to allow ATR, in compliance with terms stipulated to export parts, components and tools, updated software as well as providing technology necessary to ensure the safe operation of the ATR 72-600s. It is due to expire on April 30, 2021.
The Iranian flag carrier, through the Ministry of Road and Urban Development, signed a contract with the Franco-Italian aircraft manufacturer for 20 ATR 72-600s plus 20 options in February 2016, following a thawing in relations between the Islamic Republic and the West. ATR delivered 13 aircraft before sanctions against Iran were tightened again in August 2018 by the Trump administration and the remaining seven remain undelivered.