Thursday 23rd May 2019 

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News: Iran Economy

Top Oil Producer Says Evading US Sanctions on Iran Regime Will Be Near Impossible

Top Oil Producer-Us Sanctions-Iran

By Staff Writer

The top oil producer in the world has said that it will be nearly impossible for any company to avoid new and renewed US sanctions on Iranian regime, suggesting that Donald Trump’s decision to restart sanctions on Iranian regime may be more effective than anyone could have predicted.

On Friday at the St. Petersburg Economic forum, Vitol Group Chairman Ian Taylor said: “For us it’s a real challenge… I personally think none of us will be able to get around it.”

He also said that there are unanswered questions about how Europe will respond to the sanctions and if the European Central Bank will find some way to negate the sanctions for European companies.

This echoes the comments made by other industry leaders who believe that there is no way to do business with Iran without incurring US sanctions and have already made decisions about withdrawing from their trade deals with Iran.

Total SA CEO Patrick Pouyanne recently said that no company should be under “any illusions” about European companies being exempt from US sanctions, while BP Plc CEO Bob Dudley stated that his company wouldn’t be testing the waters when it came to the sanctions on Iran.

Trump announced that he was pulling the US out of the 2015 nuclear deal on May 8, citing the many flaws in the deal, including:

• its failure to stop Iran from legally obtaining a nuclear bomb for more than 10 years

• its failure to address other pressing issues like Iran’s human rights violations and regional belligerence

• its lack of international inspections of Iranian nuclear sites

The last time that sanctions were imposed on Iran by the US was between 2012 and 2016, a handful of (mostly) Asian companies were allowed to continue limited trade with Iran, provided they abide by intense restrictions set by the US. For example, they had to show the US that they were lowering their imports to avoid losing access to the US financial markets. It is unlikely that the US will make these sort of allowances this time around.

And while Europe may initially be speaking out against the sanctions as they don’t want to lose these trade deals, it’s highly likely that they will soon cut their financial ties to the terrorist regime in order to keep access to the bigger US market. Organising a way to evade US sanctions would be a lot of work for not much benefit and potentially a lot of pain.

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