In addition, Jean-Claude Juncker noted that EU leaders had "also made a decision to allow the European Investment Bank to facilitate European companies' investment in Iran" and that the European Commission would continue to cooperate with Iran. The commission also launched "the formal process to remove obstacles for the European Investment Bank (EIB) to decide under the EU budget guarantee to finance activities outside the European Union, in Iran", the executive said.
The measure potentially could put European companies in a bind, as they could be forced to choose between compliance with the EU measure and USA secondary sanctions against Iran.
The "blocking statute" is a 1996 regulation originally created to get around Washington's trade embargo on Cuba. "This approach could help the Iranian authorities to receive their oil-related revenues, particularly in case of U.S. sanctions which could target European Union entities active in oil transactions with Iran", the document says.
The US position is at odds with that of France, Germany and the United Kingdom, which say they are committed to the agreement and to expanding trade with Iran.
As the European signatories of the JCPoA, France, Germany and the United Kingdom have repeated their commitment to the deal, and discussed compensatory measures to ensure that USA sanctions do not make the agreement void.
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Iranian Foreign Minister and foreign ministers of major world powers stand for a photo after reaching a historic nuclear accord in 2015.
The president decided that he would withdraw the U.S. from the accord, which he referred to as "flawed", thereby raising the specter of renewed sanctions against companies that do business with Iran.
Some of Europe's biggest firms had rushed to do business with Iran after the nuclear deal took effect.
President Donald Trump has repeatedly threatened to pull out of the JCPOA unless Congress and America's European allies "fix" it with a follow-up accord.
"We're not going to force French businesses to stay in Iran".
But the most accurate observations by Macron was that Trump's Iran decision strengthens both Russian Federation and China in the region, something we pointed out weeks ago, begging the question whose interests is Trump representing.