An Airbus A380 performs during a flying display at the 47th Paris Air Show at Le Bourget airport near Paris, in this June 21, 2007 photo. REUTERS/Pascal Rossignol
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Freed from nuclear-related sanctions, Iran has signaled its appetite to buy more than 100 Western planes, a prospect that would usually have the giants of the $130 billion-a-year jet industry scrambling for a piece of the action.Western and Iranian officials say Iran will require at least 400 jets over a decade to replenish its ageing fleet. However, industry leaders say that it could take months or even longer to remove all the legal, regulatory and political obstacles so that significant numbers of planes could be sold to Iran, which still remains subject to a broad range of other U.S. sanctions.Iran has always denied that charge.Although Washington has liberalized rules to allow U.S. and foreign firms – including Airbus – to seek licenses to sell passenger aircraft to Iran on a case-by-case basis, Boeing and other U.S. companies have displayed little appetite to take the lead.Some aircraft executives are worried about the risk that sanctions can be reintroduced if Iran fails to curb its nuclear activities, under a so-called 'snapback' mechanism.
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