Tags: EU rules iran us

EU Rules Let Iran Import, Export Oil and Gas

Thursday, 28 Oct 2010 06:53 AM


TEHRAN - The United States and Europe have worked cooperatively on Iran policy since President Obama took office, but a small crack might have begun to open over sanctions that are beginning to pinch ordinary Iranians, The Washington Post reports.

The European Union issued regulations this week that went well beyond a U.N. Security Council resolution passed in June, outlining tough restrictions on the sale of equipment and technology to the Iranian oil and gas industry, as well as on investment in those sectors. But the regulations - unlike legislation passed by the U.S. Congress - allow for the import and export of oil and gas to the Islamic republic.

"If you want to send a tanker filled with refined petrol to Iran, and you have proved that you are not carrying any other goods that we deem illegal, Europe has no problem," said a European official who specializes in sanction policies and spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the subject. "We don't want any negative effect on the Iranian population or to deprive them of energy, so we do not follow U.S. measures that go beyond United Nations sanctions."

The E.U. will also permit financial transactions needed to import of oil and gas to Iran. The United States, by contrast, penalizes companies if they sell gasoline to Iran, and has increased pressure on international oil companies and refineries to cancel their contracts with the country.

The practical effect of the European action might be minimal because European oil giants might still refuse to supply Iran with fuel for fear of appearing to thwart U.S. sanctions.

Read the entire story at washingtonpost.com

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Thursday, 28 Oct 2010 06:53 AM
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