Global News

Iran's Oil Sector Was Bouncing Back. Can It Survive Renewed US Sanctions?

Iran's Oil Sector Was Bouncing Back. Can It Survive Renewed US Sanctions?

Donald Tusk, the EU president, urged leaders meeting in Bulgaria to form a "united European front" against Trump's withdrawal from the Iranian nuclear deal and his move to impose trade tariffs on Europe.

Tusk said he wanted the European leaders to "reconfirm" that they will stay in the Iran deal, as long as Tehran respects it - although Europe must now find a way to make up for the USA sanctions on Iran that Trump will reactivate.

European Council President Donald Tusk spoke at a news conference in the Bulgarian capital, Sofia, on Wednesday before attending an unofficial EU summit.

But the measures have never been used and may be hard to enforce, while European Union companies could still face asset seizures, fines and possibly criminal charges in the US. "We want a permanent exemption and then we are ready to talk about how we can reciprocally reduce the barriers to trade", German Chancellor Angela Merkel told reporters on Thursday, according to Reuters.

Perhaps sensing what is coming, French President Emmanuel Macron took a slightly softer tone, and said that the French defense of Iran nuclear accord is based on concerns about security and stability, not commerce, and that the deal should be supplemented and it is necessary to continue negotiations, including on missile program. The EU would seek to open up market access for American industrial products, loosen restrictions on procuring US goods for public agencies, help usher in reforms to the World Trade Organization, and import more American liquefied natural gas.

The European Commission's blocking statute is seen by European governments more as a political weapon than a regulation, because its rules are vague and hard to enforce, serving mainly as a warning to the US.

Trump complained Thursday during a White House appearance with NATO's leader that the European Union has been "terrible" to the USA on trade and had racked up a $151 billion trade deficit a year ago. The nuclear agreement of 2015 is an important element of peace and security in the region, and we chose to support it, whatever the United States decision was.

Bashar al-Assad has travelled to Russian Federation to meet Vladimir Putin
The Russian leader said the military successes have created suitable conditions for the resumption of the political process in Syria .

The European leaders' insistence on the need to adhere to the terms of the 2015 accord stems from their attempt to protect European companies' interests in Iran that are being dealt a severe blow with the pullout.

Iran's current limited willingness to cooperate with and get practical guarantees from the European countries to try to keep the deal in place without the USA could be a great opportunity for the Europeans to take the first step on their new path and offer a new alternative multipolar world order based on global law which ensures the interests of countries are equally preserved.

But companies around the world now face a hard choice as Washington has threatened to punish firms that violate United States sanctions by dealing with Iran.

The proposed European Union actions are no guarantee that the accord can be salvaged, however, with the US Treasury Department saying companies with existing contracts will have 90 to 180 days to extract themselves from their Iran dealings before becoming subject to penalties.

Meanwhile, the head of Iran's Atomic Energy Organisation called on the European signatories to make up for the United States withdrawal from the agreement.

Jean Claude Juncker, president of the European Commission, said on Thursday the commission has a "duty to protect European companies" from American sanctions.


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