ANKARA IranAir has finalised a deal to buy 20 turboprop aircraft from Franco-Italian ATR, the minister overseeing Iran's post-sanctions fleet renewal was quoted on Wednesday as saying.
"Negotiations with ATR have reached the final stage; the two sides signed the contract to purchase 20 aircraft and now we are at the stage of exchanging documents," Roads and Urban Development Minister Abbas Akhoundi said, in remarks quoted by the Iranian Students News Agency.
Such a deal would be worth 540 million euros ($571 million)at list prices.
ATR, co-owned by Airbus and Italy's Leonardo (LDOF.MI), declined to comment.
The company's chief executive told Reuters last month it had completed commercial negotiations with IranAir and expected to be able to sign a contract very soon.
Iran, which had not directly purchased a Western-built plane in nearly 40 years, signed contracts with Airbus (AIR.PA) and U.S. rival Boeing (BA.N) last year to purchase about 180 jets.
The deals were struck under an agreement between Iran and six major powers that lifted most international sanctions imposed on Tehran, in exchange for Iran curbing its nuclear programme.
IranAir and ATR have spent months negotiating a firm order for 20 ATR 72-600 aircraft, with options for another 20.
But officials said last month a final deal has been held up due to uncertainty over some export licences for spare engines made by a Canadian subsidiary of Pratt & Whitney (UTX.N).
The engine maker has said it is working closely with ATR to ensure all necessary approvals are in place.
(Reporting by Parisa Hafezi, Writing by Tim Hepher; Editing by Susan Fenton and Jane Merriman)