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etvfutures.com May 22, 2018


Zarif says Russian Federation confirmed readiness to honor Iran deal despite United States pullout

16 May 2018, 08:10 | Opal Carroll

How Shell could be hit by Iran deal pull-out

Europeans scramble to save Iran deal after Trump reneges

So far, China, France, Russia, Britain, Germany and Iran remain in the accord, which placed controls on Iran's nuclear program and led to a relaxation of economic sanctions against Iran and companies doing business there.

The Europeans and Iranians have now tasked experts to come up with measures quickly and will meet again in Vienna next week at a deputy foreign minister level.

Such is the mood in Brussels this week, where European Union leaders are determined to thwart Donald Trump, save the Iran deal, and, perhaps, begin formulating a new foreign policy that might allow the bloc to assert more independence from the basket case on the other side of the Atlantic.

President Donald Trump failed to strike a deal with Iran last week when he met with leaders to discuss the country's contested nuclear program.

Iran's main trade partners are the United Arab Emirates and China, which account for 23.6% and 22.3% of the country's total trade, according to the European Commission.

Mohammad Javad Zarif will later fly to Moscow and Brussels to consult with the remaining signatories to the 2015 agreement denounced by President Donald Trump.

In the past week, it has slapped a new series of sanctions against Iran.

Highlighting just how hard it will be, the U.S. Treasury announced on Tuesday more sanctions, including on Iran's central bank governor, just minutes before the Brussels meeting was due to begin.

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Iran's foreign minister is due to land in Brussels later Tuesday on the final leg of a global tour rallying diplomatic support for the country's nuclear deal after the Trump administration's abrupt withdrawal.

The accord had provided Tehran with relief from sanctions in return for curbs on its nuclear programme.

Seif, a career banker, became the head of Iran's Central Bank in 2013 under President Hassan Rouhani, who shepherded the nuclear deal.

European diplomats acknowledged that the EU support, however honest, risked looking hollow after Trump reimposed an array of wide sanctions last week on Iran that will hit European companies investing there.

"Already this week, the IRGC (Revolutionary Guards) has fired rockets at Israeli citizens, and Iran's proxies in Yemen have launched a ballistic missile at Riyadh", it said.

Germany's minister for economic affairs, Peter Altmaier, said on Sunday that Berlin would try to "persuade the U.S. government to change its behavior".

The statement said "the Iranian regime's reckless actions pose a severe threat to regional peace and security". In retaliation to the attacks on Iran's military systems in Syria, prominent Iranian cleric Ayatollah Ahmad Khatami threatened attack on two of Israel's most important cities if the Jewish nation continued on its "foolish" ways. One option is to invoke a never-before-used "blocking mechanism" that would direct European Union businesses to ignore the US sanctions.

Each company and bank will have to decide whether to risk being cut off from the USA financial system. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has constantly maintained that Iran is sticking to the terms of the agreement and is not cheating, a fact independently verified by the US military as well.



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