Europe trade channel with Iran close to first deal in days: France
French Finance Minister said on Thursday he hoped a special trade channel set up with Iran would complete a first, limited transaction in the coming days.
Iran Press/Europe: “We want Instex to enter into force in a few days, and I hope that we will be able to operate in a few days. I hope the first transaction will be completed in a few days,” Le Maire told journalists at a meeting in Poland.
According to Reuters, Le Maire added, “The first transaction will be a limited one, but this is a starting point and we expect Instex to be an efficient tool.”
Set up by France, Britain and Germany, Instex is a barter trade mechanism that aims to avoid direct financial transfers by offsetting balances between importers and exporters on the European side.
The mechanism is aimed at making it possible for trade between European Union members and Iran to continue in the face of stiff US sanctions since Washington unilaterally quit a 2015 nuclear accord between Tehran and world powers last year.
Iran has said it wants to keep the nuclear deal alive but must receive promised economic benefits. On Monday, it said it had amassed more low-enriched uranium than permitted. Iran has also said it will announce further measures on July 7.
France’s foreign ministry said on Wednesday that Instex would become operational based on Iran’s “full compliance with its JCPOA commitments.”
“We aren’t going to press the yes button if there are doubts about its compliance,” said one European diplomat.
This is while, Iranian officials have repeatedly said Instex must include oil sales or provide substantial credit facilities for it to be beneficial. 213/