UK will expand trade with Iran despite US sanctions being reimposed, says Downing Street

Number 10 says British firms should ‘take advantage’ of opportunities

President Hassan Rouhani has vowed to defy US sanctions
President Hassan Rouhani has vowed to defy US sanctions

The UK will carry on developing trade relations with Iran despite the Trump administration’s decision to re-impose sanctions, Downing Street has said.

A spokesperson for the prime minister said the government "regrets” President Donald Trump’s move to restore economic restrictions lifted in 2015 when Tehran signed up to a nuclear deal.

He said the international agreement continues to makes the world a safer place, and that British firms should “take advantage” of commercial opportunities with Iran.

He also explained work is being done to protect businesses from the knock-on impact of secondary sanctions.

“We regret the re-imposition of sanctions by the US,” he said.

“We continue to believe that the Iran nuclear deal makes the world a safer place and our position remains that as long as Iran continues to meet its obligations under the deal by respecting strict limits on its nuclear activity we will be committed to it too."

Ms May, France’s Emmanuel Macron and Germany’s Angela Merkel said in May that they remained firmly committed to the Iran nuclear deal after Mr Trump announced he was pulling the US out.

The prime minister told the US president the UK was sticking with the agreement in a telephone call at the time.

Under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, Iran agreed to scale back key elements of its nuclear energy programme associated with the development of a nuclear weapon in return for the easing of economic sanctions.

Mr Trump has insisted the deal that was struck three years ago under the Obama administration was not tough enough on Iran.

Support free-thinking journalism and attend Independent events

The US sanctions are aimed at the Iranian oil industry. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Monday that 20 nations have cut their oil imports from the Iran, and that the country’s exports have fallen by more than a million barrels a day.

Yet President Hassan Rouhani vowed that Iran would defy US sanctions and said the US decision had plunged his country into an economic war.

“We are in the war situation,” he said on Monday. “We are in the economic war situation. We are confronting a bullying enemy. We have to stand to win.”

At a meeting of economists broadcast live on state TV, Mr Rouhani vowed to “continue to sell our oil… to break sanctions”.

Additional reporting by agencies

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in