US officials are currently hosting events around the world, with the intention of helping businesses understand the sanctions regimes they still need to navigate in order to do business with Iran. Reports suggest concerns about penalties for breaching the US sanctions on Iran that were not lifted under the JCPOA. There are also concerns among EU and Asian banks that, although it is no longer prohibited for non-US entities to provide US dollars to Iran, the ongoing prohibition on using the US financial system for transactions involving Iran, including for dollar clearing, still makes it difficult to do business with Iranian companies.
Speaking yesterday, US Secretary of State John Kerry said that “Iran deserves the benefits of the agreement they struck…we have tried to make sure that the banks that are supposed to be doing legitimate business with Iran after the agreement are operating”. Principal deputy co-ordinator for sanctions policy at the US Department of State Chris Backemeyer has also stated that “We are not looking to discourage any business in Iran permitted by the agreement”, adding that “This is not a game of gotcha”.