FM Zarif: Iran Waiting for EU’s Expected Measures

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Tehran is still waiting for measures the EU was supposed to take on banking channels and oil sale, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said Saturday.

Speaking to reporters in Tehran on the sidelines of a conference, Zarif said, "The European Union was supposed to take a number of measures, including the preservation of the Iranian oil sale and banking channels and we are still waiting for them to take that.”

As regards reports about the EU move to allocate 18 million euros to Iran, he said, “This is a package to help the two sides keep contacts and has nothing to do with the JCPOA….”

His remarks came after reports claim that the package of 18 million euros is to help offset the impact of the US sanctions and save the 2015 nuclear deal.

Earlier, Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Qassemi had said that the European Union’s Thursday move to allocate 18 million euros ($20.6 mln) to support Iran has nothing to do with the EU’s expected package of economic measures to save the deal.

In remarks released early on Friday, Qassemi said the European Commission has allocated the €18 million fund to help implement development projects in Iran, adding that it is the first part of the commission’s €50 million in aid for Iran.

“This budget is related to Iran's cooperation with the European Union, and it has nothing to do with the EU’s economic package planned to be proposed within the framework of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) to counter US sanctions against Iran,” the spokesman said.

In a press release on Thursday, the European Commission said it has “adopted a first package of €18 million for projects in support of sustainable economic and social development in the Islamic Republic of Iran, including €8 million assistance to the private sector.”

“Today's projects are the first of a wider package of €50 million for Iran, aiming to support the country to address key economic and social challenges,” it said, adding, “They are part of the renewed cooperation and engagement between the European Union and Iran following the conclusion of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).”

The EU has vowed to counter Trump’s renewed sanctions on Iran, including by means of a new law to shield European companies from punitive measures.

Trump on August 6 signed an executive order re-imposing many sanctions on Iran, three months after pulling out of the Iran nuclear deal.

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