Airbus has signed a historic deal with Iran Air for 100 aircraft, which includes 46 A320 Family, 38 A330 Family and 16 A350 XWB aircraft. The delivery of the aircraft will begin in early 2017, the company said in a statement released on Thursday, 22 December.

Airbus did not disclose the deal amount, but Reuters reported it would be worth $18bn (£14.6bn) to $20bn (£16.3bn) at list prices, depending on variants flown, and Iran could get steep discounts. Iran Air chief has said earlier that the value of the contract would not exceed $10bn.

Airbus said the deal will build on the initial commitment signed between the two sides in January in Paris. The deal comes almost a year after sanctions were lifted against Iran.

The Airbus deal follows a $17bn agreement signed by Iran with Boeing for 80 jets. The country is expected to sign another deal for procurement of turboprop aircraft from ATR, which is half-owned by Airbus, Reuters reports.

Fabrice Bregier, president and CEO of Airbus, who signed the deal with Farhad Parvaresh, chairman and CEO of Iran Air, termed it as a landmark deal that will allow Iran to renew its aircraft fleet, in addition to getting assistance in pilot training, airport operations and air traffic management.

" this agreement is also a significant first step in the overall modernisation of Iran's commercial aviation sector," Bregier said in the statement released by Airbus.

Parvaresh said: "I am delighted that we have reached an agreement to go to the next decisive phase and start taking delivery of new aircraft...Iran Air considers this agreement an important step towards a stronger international presence in civil aviation. We hope this success signals to the world that the commercial goals of Iran and its counterparts are better achieved with international cooperation and collaboration."

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Airbus said that the deal is subject to US government Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) export licences which were granted in September and November 2016.

"Airbus coordinated closely with regulators in the EU, US and elsewhere to ensure understanding and full compliance with the JCPOA [Joint Comprehensive Plan Of Action]. Airbus will continue to act in full compliance with the conditions of the OFAC licences," the American aircraft manufacturer said.