Iranian airlines owe $280 mln to oil ministry
Baku, Azerbaijan, Jan.27
By Fatih Karimov - Trend: Iranian airlines owe 6.88 trillion rials (about $280 million) to the oil ministry, IRNA quoted financial manager of the National Iranian Oil Products Distribution Company Baratali Rafati as saying on Jan. 27.
The airlines increased ticket prices by 70 percent last year due to increased fuel prices, he said, adding that jet fuel is sold to the airlines at 7,000 rials (about 30 cents) per liter.
On Jan.10, the Fars News Agency quoted managing director of the State Airports Company, Mahmoud Rasoulinejad, as saying that Iranian airlines owe 3.6 trillion rials (about $145 million) to the State Airports Company.
The airlines are not willing to pay their debts. So, we have to act legally to collect a portion of the sum, he added.
Mahan, Iran Air, and Asseman airlines are the biggest debtors, he noted.
In September 2013, Managing Director of Iran Airtour Airline Sirous Baheri said over 60 per cent of Iran's total 220 airplanes are grounded due to technical and logistic issues.
Iranian airlines' air fleet is on average 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.
"Not having 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 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.