Iranian foreign minister in a message hailed implementation of Instrument in Support of Trade Exchanges (INSTEX), saying Iran is ready to maintain constructive engagement with Europe.

Iran Press/Iran news: "Iran welcomes #INSTEX—a long overdue 1st step—in E3 implementation of May 2018 commitments to save JCPOA by ensuring dividends for Iranians after US’ illegal reimposition of sanctions. We remain ready for constructive engagement with Europe on equal footing & with mutual respect," Mohammad Javad Zarif tweeted on Thursday.

Following months-long preparations, foreign ministers of France, Germany and Britain finally unveiled the mechanism -- officially called the Instrument in Support of Trade Exchanges (INSTEX) -- on Thursday following a summit in Bucharest, Iran Press reported.

"France, Germany and the United Kingdom, in accordance with their resolute commitment and continued efforts to preserve the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) endorsed by United Nations Security Council resolution 2231, announce the creation of INSTEX SAS (Instrument for Supporting Trade Exchanges), a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) aimed at facilitating legitimate trade between European economic operators and Iran," the three foreign ministers said in a joint statement. 

They also underlined their commitment "to pursue the further development of INSTEX with interested European countries to make this instrument in support of trade exchanges with Iran operational by following the steps set out above."

Shortly after the announcement, US Department of State spokesperson said in a statement that the United States does not expect the European Union-created special-purpose vehicle (SPV) to affect Washington’s campaign of exerting maximum pressure on Iran.

The spokesperson added that as US President Donald Trump has made clear, "entities that continue to engage in sanction able activity involving Iran risk severe consequences that could include losing access to the US financial system and the ability to do business with the United States or US companies."

Earlier in the day, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Seyyed Abbas Araqchi described the launch as "the first of a set of commitments to Iran that the Europeans must fulfill," expressing hope that mechanism will not be left incomplete.101/202


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