Germany blocks $400 million cash delivery to Iran amid heightened US sanctions
Germany’s central bank blocked a $400 million cash delivery to Iran, marking an added victory for the US in line with their heightened sanctions on the country, which were put into full force early Tuesday.
In the midst of Iran facing a depreciating currency and severe drop in their economic situation, the country is in need of hard currency in cash ahead of more sanctions to be imposed by the US in November.
The $400 million is being held by Iranian-owned European-Iranian trade bank (EIH), which is allowed to operate in Hamburg.
The EIH was previously sanctioned by Europe and the US for helping push Iran’s nuclear program.
According to Fox News, the US ambassador to Berlin was the one who lead the campaign to persuade the German government to stop the money transfer.
“We are grateful to our German partners for recognizing the need to act,” he told the news channel.
We are pleased to see German businesses stopping their trade with Iran, complying with U.S. sanctions, and helping pressure the Iranian regime back to the table. We stand together to stop Iran's malign activities.— Richard Grenell (@RichardGrenell) August 7, 2018
Meanwhile, President Donald Trump pledged that companies doing business with Tehran would be barred from doing business with the United States, and many companies have already listened,
Mercedes-Benz has announced on Tuesday that it had frozen all business with Iran due “to applicable sanctions.” Total has said it will quit the multibillion-dollar South Pars gas project if it cannot secure a waiver from the US sanctions - a request French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said last month had been rejected along with other French corporations.
Tuesday’s sanctions target Iran’s purchases of US dollars, metals trading, coal, industrial software and auto sector. Global oil prices rose on Tuesday on concern sanctions could cut world supply, although the toughest measures targeting Iran’s oil exports do not take effect for four more months.