On Tuesday, June 8 in Pillsbury’s London office, Pillsbury and the Eurasia Group hosted the first event in their Sanctions & Market Opportunities Series entitled “Iran Sanctions, Investment and Trade: Preparing for Divergent Outcomes.”
During the event, panelists discussed the likelihood for a final agreement related to Iran’s nuclear program and the eventual easing of international sanctions. Panel members also discussed the current U.S. and EU sanctions regime and what may change in the event of an agreement or if talks fall apart. As part of these discussions, the panel detailed the U.S. congressional review process that will occur in event of an agreement and how this process is impacting the negotiations and may hinder sanctions relief.
The audience of senior European business leaders received several key takeaways, including:
- While a deal appears likely, significant hurdles remain before the expiration of talks on or shortly after June 30.
- Widespread sanctions relief for Iran, including from EU and UN sanctions, will likely be delayed until Congress reviews the agreement.
- Only those sanctions related to Iran’s nuclear program may terminate; those put in place because of anti-terrorism, human rights, or other national security concerns in the US and EU will likely remain in place.
- UN and EU sanctions relief is relatively uncomplicated to implement, but ending U.S. sanctions, which are derived from a complex patchwork of laws, regulations, and executive orders, will be harder to unwind.
- Accordingly, US and European businesses may face different, but often overlapping, regulatory regimes. Should sanctions lift, European business may have the ability to move faster to invest in Iran than US businesses in some situations.
The situation is shifting rapidly and the applicable laws and regulations are complex – Pillsbury and the Eurasia Group are available to help businesses navigate this emerging opportunity and manage their risks.