European Union launches measures to protect its business interests in Iran

The measures proposed by the European Commission includes, blocking laws that ban EU firms to comply with U.S. sanctions law, not recognizing court ruling that enforce American penalties, start the legal process of working with Iran’s central bank and allowing EU banks to fund the projects of EU companies in Iran.

On Friday, the European Commission stated, it has begun a process that mitigates sanctions-blocking measure for European businesses in Iran.

The EU move comes in the wake of the U.S. President Donald Trump pulling the United States out of the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement and reimposing sanctions on Tehran.

The European Commission’s statement, in reference to an EU regulation that dates back to 1996, said, it had “launched the formal process to activate the Blocking Statute by updating the list of U.S. sanctions on Iran falling within its scope”.

As per EU officials, they are revamping the blocking statute to encompass Trump’s May 8 decision to revive Iran-related sanctions which include transaction with its oil sector and those with its central bank.

The measure is expected to come into effect within two months, and probably sooner if it got strong political support. It however could get stalled if the European Parliament and EU governments formally rejected it.

The EU’s blocking statute bans any EU company from complying with U.S. sanctions and does not recognize any court rulings that enforce American penalties.

Other proposed measures include urging governments within the bloc to start working with Iran’s central bank and start the legal process of allowing the European Investment Bank to lend to EU projects in Iran.

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