Iran to start importing spare parts for airplanes in two weeks
Baku, Azerbaijan, Feb.1
By Fatih Karimov - Trend: Iran will start importing spare parts for its national aviation fleet in the next two weeks, the Mehr News Agency quoted Iran's Civil Aviation Organization head Alireza Jahangirian as saying on February 1.
The CAO has sent a request to the National Development Fund for receiving $400 million to this end, Jahangirian said.
"We are planning to expedite the process of importing spare parts," Jahangirian said.
Iranian airlines are importing spare parts at rates as much as five times of globally standard rates, due to the international sanctions which have been imposed on the country's aviation sector, ISNA quoted the Managing Director of Qeshm Airline Hefzollah Ataherian as saying on January 11.
The main concern of the airlines is the importation of spare parts for airplanes, Ataherian said, adding that the sanctions have created serious problems for buying spare parts.
Most of the airlines are indebted and their revenues are not enough to pay their debts, he said.
Managing Director of Iran Airtour Airline Sirous Baheri said in September 2013 that Over 60 percent of Iran's total 220 airplanes are grounded due to technical and logistic issues.
Iranian airlines' air fleet is averagely 22 years old, the ISNA News Agency reported.
"Iranians airlines are facing great losses due to the low price of domestic flights' tickets," Baheri said.
"Iranian airlines are currently having difficulties to compete with the foreign airlines," he added.
"The lack of connection with the manufacturers is one of the main problems of the domestic airlines, which has made it difficult for them to repair their airplanes," Baheri stated.
The head of the association of Iranian airlines Abdolreza Mousavi said in May 2013 that Iranian airlines are unable to pay off their fuel debts to the Oil Ministry due to their bad financial situation.
"Many airplanes of the national fleet have been grounded due to financial problems," he said, adding that spare parts and components are purchased from second-hand sources with great difficulties.