Press TV – Iran’s largest airline IranAir has reported an operating profit for the year ending in March 2019 despite a surge in aviation costs in the country as a result of the American sanctions.
A deputy to Iran’s minister of transportation said on Saturday that IranAir had posted the unspecified profit during an annual shareholder meeting held earlier in the day in Tehran.
Shahram Adamnejad would not elaborate on the net figures and further details and there was no information available from the flag carrier.
IranAir is expected to announce increased revenues for the current calendar year ending March 2020 mainly because it accommodated a large number of flights carrying Iranian pilgrims to Saudi Arabia for the Hajj season in September.
The company announced during the busy travel season that it had scrambled technicians and engineers to keep planes airworthy despite sanctions that ban using foreign companies for maintenance services.
Despite a US ban on its purchase of 200 aircraft from Airbus, Boeing and ATR, IranAir has pressed ahead with an ambitious fleet expansion program as it seeks buying planes whose sales are not affected by the sanctions.
It said last year any offer from companies based in Russia and in non-European countries to deliver new planes would be welcome.
Adamnejad said that an operating profit recorded for Homa, as the carrier’s short name goes in Persian, at a time of “increased costs and oppressive sanctions” was a result of better performance in fields including ticket sale, cargo, engineering, ground services and cost control.
“It is expected that through implementing fleet expansion programs at Homa and increased sale revenues for the company, its profit-making run could accelerate by several times,” he said.