All tagged Trump

Europe Tries to Sidestep the U.S. Finance System

◢ The standoff between the Trump administration and Iran is escalating, and Europe is caught in the middle. Brussels and national governments in the U.K., France and Germany, meanwhile, have been criticized by Iran for their response to U.S. sanctions. Europeans “speak eloquently”, Iran’s foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said in February. “They also need to walk the walk.” But it would be wrong to dismiss Europe’s efforts as hopeless.

Squeezing Gas Prices or Iran? Trump Must Choose

◢ The deadline for the US administration to decide whether to extend sanctions waivers granted to buyers of Iranian oil is now less than a month away, and President Donald Trump faces a tricky decision. He undoubtedly wants to increase pressure on the Persian Gulf nation, but in doing so he risks stoking oil prices and with them those all-important gas prices in swing states back home.

Here’s How the United States Can Help Iran's Flood Recovery

◢ In order improve preparedness for frequent earthquakes, floods, sandstorms, and heat-waves, Iran urgently needs to upgrade its surveying and monitoring technologies to better model and predict meteorological, hydrological, and geological events. The United States should create a new general license to remove the sanctions-related barriers to Iran’s acquisition of these much needed technologies.

The United States and Iran are in a Quantum War

◢ It took just under an hour for staff at Israel’s Government Press Office to delete a tweet that suggested that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had finally decided to wage war on Iran. The conflict Iran faces today is neither a hot war nor a cold war. It is a quantum war—a superimposition of two states of conflict. Put another way, depending on when you observe the facts, Iran is both at war and it is not.

As Sanctions Impede Business, Where Next for Iran-Italy Relations?

◢ Despite strong relations, President Trump’s withdrawal from the JCPOA and his reimposition of economic sanctions has introduced significant challenges for Italian enterprises active in Iran. As with other European companies, Italian firms are unwilling to jeopardize their presence in the US market for the sake of opportunities in Iran. Yet, Italy and Europe have every interest to see that Iran continues to be an important trading partner and a supplier of energy.

Why The Iran Nuclear Deal Still Matters for Europe

◢ The JCPOA continues to hang together—but only just. There are growing indications of signatory states’ fatigue and frustration in attempting to prevent the collapse of the JCPOA, following the US withdrawal from it last May. In this climate, it is important for the deal’s stakeholders to remember why it remains valuable

The Economic War Iran Faces is Bigger Than it Thinks

◢ On the third anniversary of the implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and the fortieth anniversary of the Islamic Republic, the era of hope ushered in by the election of Hassan Rouhani and the implementation of the nuclear deal seems a lifetime ago. Iran remains in compliance with the agreement, but begrudgingly. Europe looks impotent in the face of U.S. sanctions. But Iran’s economic war isn't just a fight against sanctions. Iran is the frontline of an intensifying economic war between the US, Europe, China, and Russia.

America’s Latest Wave of Iran Sanctions: An Explainer

◢ On 5 November, the Trump administration’s latest and most significant wave of sanctions against Iran came into effect. The US Treasury has issued a list of more than 700 Specially Designated Nationals (SDNs) and Blocked Persons, which includes roughly 300 entities that did not feature in Obama-era sanctions. The new sanctions impact Iran’s oil and transportation industries and banking sector in important ways.

China Unexpectedly Gambles on European Mechanism to Sustain Iran Trade

◢ China has halted its financial transactions with Iran as part of an unexpected gamble on the future of its trading relationship with the Islamic Republic. According to Majid Reza Hariri, deputy president of the Iran-China Chamber of Commerce, China is hoping to sustain its trade with Iran without putting its financial system in the crosshairs of US authorities by joining the special purpose vehicle being devised by Europe for this purpose.

Parsian Bank CEO: US Treasury Made ‘Mistake’ in Iran Sanctions Designation

◢ In an exclusive interview with Bourse & Bazaar, CEO of Iran’s Parsian Bank, which was sanctioned last week by the US Treasury, has described the designation of the bank as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) a “mistake.” The move against one of Iran’s leading private sector banks by has many in Iran’s banking sector worried about the ongoing viability of humanitarian trade.

Under Trump, US Sale of Medical Goods to Iran Down Nearly 40%

◢ With just two weeks until Trump reimposes secondary sanctions on Iran, administration officials are under increasing pressure to prove that the returning sanctions will not adversely impact humanitarian trade. Looking to US Census Bureau export data, a clear pattern emerges—the export of humanitarian goods like food and medicine remains significantly lower than average monthly values registered during the Obama years.

Iran: The Case for Protecting Humanitarian Trade

◢ A crisis is looming in Iran’s healthcare sector: patients are reporting shortages in life-saving medicine. The situation is expected to worsen once US sanctions on Iran are reimposed in November. European and US companies that can provide the advanced medicine and equipment needed to treat chronic diseases inside Iran are grappling with how to sustain their operations. New US sanctions will put the health of ordinary Iranians at risk. Europe can take concrete steps to minimize this—steps which also support its ongoing commitment to the nuclear deal.

Here's How the European Commission Will Allocate EUR 18 Million in Iran

◢ This month, the European Commission approved an initial tranche of EUR 18 million in development funding from an larger package of EUR 50 million that has been allocated to support projects in Iran. This represents a highly significant, “first-of-its-kind,” intervention to support Europe-Iran trade and investment. However, the funding is not primarily intended as an attempt to mitigate the effect of returning U.S. secondary sanctions. As made clear in the “action document” which details how the development funding will be distributed, the European Commission has allocated the funding “in line with the European Consensus on Development” to provide “targeted support in the areas of Prosperity, Planet and People.”

Iran Sanctions Hopes Fly on Possible Delivery of Eight ATR Aircraft

◢ In a recent interview, French Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire expressed optimism for the delivery of eight ATR turboprops to Iran as part of a contract with Iran Air, the country’s national airline. Le Maire spoke of being “hopeful that the United States will provide authorization to deliver these aircraft.” The ATR deliveries, like the three Airbus deliveries made prior to President Trump’s withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal, are highly symbolic of the hope and expectations for increased trade and investment following the implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

Three Years Later: Europe’s Last Push on the Iran Nuclear Deal

◢ The Iran nuclear agreement marked its third anniversary in a gloomy state. Many hoped that the resolution of the nuclear dispute would result in a new understanding between the West and Iran, opening a pathway for detente rather than confrontation. Relations between Europe and Iran have certainly made gains in this direction, but the Trump administration’s maximalist stance on Tehran has created an extremely hazardous environment for all remaining stakeholders in the nuclear deal.

Could Trump Deliver Iran an Oil Windfall?

◢ The president’s recent statement that OPEC may have something to do with the president’s own decision to create a crisis with Iran. While attention is duly paid to how much Americans have to pay at the pump, a more subtle and complicated story will soon play out with respect to Iran and the reapplication of US sanctions ordered by Trump on May 8, 2018. In fact, unless oil prices are contained, the primary result of the president’s action may be to ensure that Iran profits from the oil market risks that sanctions have created.