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UK, France & Germany to Open Trade With Iran Independent of US Dollar

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Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that the three major European signatories to a landmark nuclear deal with Iran agreed to establish trade ties with the Islamic Republic independent of the US dollar.

Since the United States' unilateral move in May to withdraw from the nuclear accord, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action [JCPOA], European companies are placed under mounting pressure from Washington to cut business ties with Tehran.

Earlier in May, US President Donald Trump announced that Washington was walking away from the nuclear agreement and that he plans to reinstate US nuclear sanctions on Iran and impose "the highest level" of economic bans on the Islamic Republic.

Under the JCPOA, Iran undertook to put limits on its nuclear program in exchange for the removal of nuclear-related sanctions imposed against Tehran.

Lavrov said on Monday that the decision by France, Germany and Britain would mainly concern small and medium-sized companies.

He further added that the remaining parties to the Iran nuclear deal have agreed to work out measures to protect the countries’ businesses from US sanctions.

He then criticized Washington's "illegal and unacceptable" decision to re-impose sanctions on Iran.

“Everyone agrees that this is an absolutely illegal and unacceptable policy, but, of course, this can hardly be changed and there will be enough struggle in trade, economic and political spheres,” Lavrov said.

Since Trump pulled Washington out of the historic nuclear deal, European countries have been scrambling to ensure that Iran gets enough economic benefits to persuade it to stay in the deal. The remaining parties, however, vowed to stay in the accord.

Tehran conditioned its stay in the deal to practical European strides to make sure Iran’s dividends from the deal would not be affected when US sanctions "snap back" in August.

The first group of sanctions on Iran’s automotive sector, gold trade, and other industries will “snap back” on August 4. Further sanctions on oil and transactions with the central bank of Iran will come into effect November 6.

Meanwhile, European companies working in Iran face potential US penalties as the majority of transactions are currently conducted using the US dollar.

Since its exit from the JCPOA, the Trump administration has embarked on a fresh fearmongering campaign among the European businesses active in Iran, threatening them with hefty penalties should they choose to stay in Iran when the American sanctions snap back into place.

Source: News Agencies, Edited by website team

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