European Union announces legal entity to maintain business with Iran

The European Union is vowing to keep trying to set up a new payment system that will allow its businesses to keep trading with Iran despite the USA move to reimpose sanctions on Tehran this year. But the European Union and the other world powers - Britain, France, Germany, Russia, and China - all vowed to keep honoring the deal as long as Iran continues to adhere to its curbs on nuclear activities.

EU and Iran agreed late Monday to establish a financial facility in the European Union to facilitate payments for Iranian imports and exports including oil.

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This may cut Iran's hard currency earnings from oil exports, and the prospect has triggered a panicked flight of Iranians' savings from the rial into dollars, weighing on an already ailing local currency, hit by economic woes and financial difficulties at local banks.

The US withdrew from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal in 2018.

In a major setback to the United States and Trump's administration, the European Union has made a decision to constitute new ways to enable legal trade with Iran, despite U.S. sanctions, which are expected in November.

"Mindful of the urgency and the need for tangible results", Mogherini said, "participants welcomed practical proposals to maintain and develop payment channels, notably the initiative to establish a special goal vehicle to facilitate payments related to Iran's exports, including oil, and imports, which will assist and reassure economic operators pursuing legitimate business with Iran".

Addressing the United Against a Nuclear Iran pressure group being held near the annual UN General Assembly, Pompeo said he was "disturbed and indeed deeply disappointed" by Monday's announcement from remaining members of an worldwide nuclear deal.

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During the meeting, Trump threatened that any individuals or entities that fail to comply with Iran sanctions will "face server consequences" and stressed that the United States will ensure Iran will never get a nuclear bomb.

In August, the U.S. president wrote on Twitter that "anyone doing business with Iran will NOT be doing business with the United States".

Mogherini said the financial agreement is also aimed at preserving the agreement reached in 2015 with Iran to scale back its nuclear program in exchange for relief from strict economic sanctions.

While US sanctions on Iranian oil come into effect November 4th, European Union leaders are still trying to make the deal work.

"We do not intend to allow our sanctions to be evaded by Europe or anybody else".

Trump considered it flawed because it did not include curbs on Iran's ballistic missiles programme or its support for proxies in Syria, Yemen, Lebanon and Iraq. The rial has lost about two-thirds of its value this year, hitting a record low against the US dollar this month.

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