Concrete Steps Needed to Protect Economic Interests

Representatives from Iran and the remaining five signatories of the nuclear deal in Vienna on Friday. Representatives from Iran and the remaining five signatories of the nuclear deal in Vienna on Friday.

European countries, Russia and China do have the political will to save the nuclear deal after the United States quit, but they need to come up with concrete steps that will safeguard Iran’s economic interests, says a senior official.

“What is crucial for Iran is that this will and determination be turned into practical solutions that  serve Iran’s interests in a tangible manner in various economic sectors, particularly oil and banking,” Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi told IRNA on Tuesday.

He said one of the proposals made by the remaining parties at a ministerial meeting in Vienna on Friday to keep oil trade and banking channels open was to boost non-dollar trade with Iran.

The suggestion has to be put into practice as soon as possible, Araqchi said, adding that the Vienna talks, among other things, showed the extent of US isolation on the international world stage.  

“The outcome of the meeting was a strongly worded final statement, which expressed the participants’ will to preserve the JCPOA,” the official said, using the abbreviation for the deal’s full name, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

“It was visibly in direct contrast to the US desire to destroy the agreement, and its content demonstrated the Islamic Republic’s success in expressing its demands and getting its own way.”

The deputy minister said it is significant that the non-US parties affirmed their commitment to accomplish their  objectives, including the maintenance and expansion of wider economic relations with Iran, preserving the effective financial channels, continuation of Iran’s export of oil and gas condensate, petroleum products and petrochemicals as well as the continuation of international sea, land, air and railroad links.

They also reiterated their effective support for economic enterprises in Iran, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises and pledged to encourage investments in Iran and protect their companies from the extraterritorial effects of US sanctions. Araqchi said consultations with representatives of European states, Russia and China will continue at different levels.

“It is obvious that if our country’s expectations are not eventually fulfilled despite the efforts by these nations, the Islamic Republic will use the means available to it in order to deal with any situation,” he concluded.

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