News ID: 217868
Published: 0247 GMT July 06, 2018

Europe 'finance' can help Iran skirt US sanctions

Europe 'finance' can help Iran skirt US sanctions

Iran can neutralize US sanctions on its oil exports if the European Union provides the Islamic Republic with a credit line in the form of 'finance', said a member of Board of Directors of Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture (ICCIMA).

Keivan Kashefi pointed to a package of measures Iran wants Europe to unveil to offset US exit from the nuclear agreement and said that the package should clarify how it can help Iran achieve its goals.

"The package should include guaranteed purchase of Iranian oil, the continuation of ties between Iran's private sector and small- and medium-sized European firms as well as educational and consulting services," he told the news outlet of the ICCIMA.

The official said Iran can more seriously consider joining the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) if the EU ensures that Tehran will be able to facilitate interactions with European banks.

After pulling out of the 2015 nuclear deal known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the United States has told countries to cut all imports of Iranian oil from November.

President Donald Trump withdrew his country from the accord on Mary 8. Following his decision, the US administration announced fresh round of sanctions against Tehran.

European powers have vowed to keep the JCPOA alive without the US by trying to maintain the flow of Iran's oil and investment. They, however, have acknowledged that US sanctions would make it difficult to give Iran guarantees.

Iran has also been trying to implement standards set by the FATF, a global group of government anti-money-laundering (AML) and counter financing of terrorism regimes (CFT), in the hope it will be removed from a blacklist that makes some foreign investors reluctant to deal with it.

The Paris-based body faces US opposition to remove Iran from its economic blacklist despite the steps that Tehran has taken to enact legislation barring terrorist financing and money laundering.

Last week, FATF said Iran had until October to complete reforms that would bring it into line with global norms or face consequences.

Iran has been on the FATF's 'blacklist' since 2008. But it has extended a waiver for punitive measures against Iran over the past two years. The intergovernmental organization, however, refused to remove the country from its blacklist.

Kashefi said unless Europe provides Tehran with guarantees to have access to its banks, Iran's membership to the FATF would be futile.

Iran's accession to the organization has sparked a heated debate in the country, with proponents of the FATF facing strong opposition from those who believe membership in the group only makes the country vulnerable to outside meddling.

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