EU Approves Aid to Iran to Offset US Sanctions
The European Union has agreed to appropriate 19 million euros to Iran to help offset the impact of sanctions imposed by the United States. The announcement is part of the bloc’s effort to support the nuclear agreement that United States President Donald Trump abandoned in May of 2018; it is part of a wider package of 50 million euros set aside for Iran in the EU budget.
The EU has disapproved of the U.S. sanctions and forbidden European companies from complying with them. If European firms ignore the EU’s warnings, it has threatened to hit them with its own sanctions. The goal is to sustain a trade relationship with Iran, though the latter has said it will stop complying with the 2015 nuclear agreement if it does not see economic boons from the EU’s aid. EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said in a statement that the bloc is dedicated to cooperating with Iran.
Eight million of the EU’s euros, around $9.25 million, will go toward Iran’s private sector. The sum will fund small- to medium firms, as well as Iran’s Trade Promotion Organization. An additional 10 million euros (around $10.6 million) will go into Iran’s public stores. 8 million is reserved for environmental projects, and 2 million will be used for easing the impact of drugs on the Iranian populace.
President Donald Trump has yet to comment on the EU’s budget allocation, but he is not expected to approve of the aid. Donald Trump and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani recently exchanged fiery statements via Twitter, and the relationship between the two leaders is not favorable. Furthermore, President Trump has threatened to impose sanctions on European nations whose businesses continue to trade with Iran.