EU Council publishes regulation defining scope of restrictive measures against Iran - 21 December 2012

On 21 December 2012, the EU Council approved the implementing regulation (Regulation (EU) No 1263/2012 amending Regulation (EU) No 267/2012) concerning restrictive measures against Iran. The new regulation gives legal effect to the restrictive measures agreed in Council Decision 2012/635/CFSP adopted in October 2012 (previously reported on the Club webpage: EU sanctions on Iran extend to natural gas).

The new regulation defines the scope of several bans on exports from the EU to Iran, including exports of graphite, metals, key naval equipment and technology for ship-building, additional key equipment or technology for the Iranian oil, natural gas and petrochemical sector and software for industrial production. Certain dual-use items or technologies relevant to industries controlled by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps or for Iran’s nuclear programme are also included in the export prohibition.

The restrictive measures include a ban on the import, purchase or transport of Iranian natural gas, and on the provision, directly or indirectly, of financial services including insurance/reinsurance in respect of the activities of importing, purchasing and transporting of natural gas. The regulation also clarifies that swapping Iranian natural gas is prohibited.

The new regulation clarifies the prohibition of certain services in respect of Iranian oil tankers and cargo vessels, including classification, supervision or participation in design, construction, or repair, technical or financial assistance, inspection, testing, certification, surveys, inspections, and audits.

The regulation also prohibits making available any vessel designed for the transport or storage of oil or petrochemical products to any person, unless appropriate action has been taken to prevent its use for transport or storage of oil or petrochemical products originating in or exported from Iran.

The new regulation also introduces further restrictions on transfers to Iranian financial institutions.

By way of a separate implementing regulation (No 1264/2012), the Council has also added one person and 18 entities involved in nuclear activities or providing support to the Iranian government to the list of those targeted with an asset freeze and a travel ban.

Copies of the Council Regulation (No 1263/2012) and Regulation (No 1264/2012) can be found attached as pdf documents above.

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