0233 GMT February 22, 2019
To prove its goodwill, the European Union (EU) will cooperate with Iran in the process of working out solutions to ensure the continuation of economic collaborations between the two sides, said an Iranian MP.
Mohammad Feizi, a member of the Iranian Parliament’s Planning and Budget Committee, told Iran Daily, “I see a bright future in cooperation between Iran and Europe and believe that European states will collaborate with us in the field of activating the special purpose vehicle (SPV) mechanism and similar cases.”
He noted that when the US pulled out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) – signed between Iran and P5+1 in July 2015 – on May 8, European countries moved toward fostering financial collaborations with Iran by working out solutions, such as the activation of the SPV, to show that they do not pursue US President Donald Trump’s policies on the deal.
Feizi stressed that it is not possible for Iran to unilaterally bear all the costs involved in remaining committed to an international agreement, whereas, other signatories refrain from lending sufficient support.
“Europe is duty-bound to, at least, fulfill the commitments it has accepted and pledged to honor [under the JCPOA].”
Thus, European countries are required to act more transparently in this regard and they had better not to waste time, he urged.
Feizi said Europe will come up with solutions lest its companies are sanctioned by the US due to having cooperation with Iran.
“I believe that Europe would define and set up intermediary companies and institutes for cooperation with Iran, assigning them the responsibility of handling financial transactions between the two sides.”
Establishment of intermediary companies would be the best solution for guaranteeing continuous financial cooperation between Iran and Europe, he noted.
For instance, if Iran allocates $14 billion for purchasing staples in the next year, these companies can provide the country with goods worth the equivalent amount in return for the products and oil they import from it, the lawmaker said.
He said at present, Europe is required to make its decision, adding, “Any choice will certainly have its own costs. Thus, Europe should act prudently and look at the advantages cooperation with each side [be it Iran or the US] would have for it. Europe seeks to [simultaneously] have cooperation with both Iran and the US. It neither wants to overlook the interests it has in ties with the US, nor is willing to see the level of its relations with Iran suffer further decline.
The Iranian MP noted that relations with Iran have definite benefits for Europeans, otherwise, they would have abandoned Iran a long time ago and withdrawn from the JCPOA.
Iran is a major power in the Middle East and has a special strategic position, he said, adding the country also has rich oil reserves and abundant natural resources, which are such great benefits that Europe cannot easily turn a blind eye to.