German savings banks might bypass U.S. sanctions against Iran

08 August, 2018
Source: Xinhua

Germany's savings banks and credit unions could become a potential solution for companies to continue to do business with Iran and bypass U.S. sanctions, a senior German politician has said.

European Union budgetary commissioner and Christian Democratic Union (CDU) politician made the statement to major German regional daily newspaper Rheinische Post.

Oettinger highlighted that the regionally-based and decentralized financial sector traditionally had few ties to U.S. financial markets and were hence less likely to be hit by the new sanctions regime.

Additionally, the CDU politician said that the European Commission was attempting to persuade the state-owned European Investment Bank (EIB) to expand its activities in Iran.

A growing number of business representatives in the EU have since urged policymakers in Brussels to instead set up an independent payments system with the specific purpose of processing euro-denominated trade with, and investments in, Iran without falling foul of U.S. sanctions.

Dagmar von Bohnstein, German business delegate in Iran, recently emphasized in a plea for help to the Berlin government that German companies in Iran were in urgent need of political solutions which enabled them to complete financial transactions while bypassing U.S. capital markets.

"The biggest problem is to find corporate banking providers which can complete transactions with Iranian counterparties without being penalized by U.S. sanctions," Bohnstein said.

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