USA Treasury Takes More Iran Oil Action

USA Treasury Takes More Iran Oil Action
The U.S. Department of the Treasury announced that its Office of Foreign Assets Control has taken action against certain companies.

The U.S. Department of the Treasury (DOT) announced Monday that its Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) has taken action against companies “used by Iran’s Persian Gulf Petrochemical Industry Commercial Co … to facilitate the sale of tens of millions of dollars’ worth of Iranian petroleum and petrochemical products from Iran to East Asia”.

The action is being taken pursuant to Executive Order 13846 and follows OFAC’s July 6 designation of an Iranian oil and petrochemical network selling Iranian petroleum and petrochemicals to purchasers in East Asia, and a June 16, 2022, designation of an international sanctions evasion network supporting Iranian petrochemical sales, DOT noted.

Under the action, the following companies are being designated pursuant to E.O. 13846; Blue Cactus Heavy Equipment and Machinery Spare Parts Trading L.L.C., Farwell Canyon HK Limited, Shekufei International Trading Co., Limited, and PZNFR Trading Limited.

DOT also outlined that, in a separate but related action, it was designating two entities “that have engaged in the purchase, acquisition, sale, transport, or marketing of Iranian petroleum and petroleum products, including providing logistical support to the Iranian petroleum trade, pursuant to E.O. 13846”.  

As a result of Monday’s action, all property and interests in property of the targets that are in the U.S., or in the possession or control of U.S. persons, must be blocked and reported to OFAC, DOT highlighted. In addition, any entities that are owned, directly or indirectly, 50 percent or more by one or more blocked persons are also blocked and OFAC’s regulations generally prohibit all dealings by U.S. persons, or within the United States, that involve any property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons, DOT noted.

Persons that engage in certain transactions with the individuals and entities designated on Monday may be exposed to sanctions or subject to an enforcement action, DOT warned. Furthermore, unless an exception applies, any foreign financial institution that knowingly facilitates a significant transaction for any of the individuals or entities designated Monday could be subject to U.S. sanctions, DOT stated.

“The United States continues to pursue the path of diplomacy to achieve a mutual return to full implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action,” Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian E. Nelson said in a government statement.

“Until such time as Iran is ready to return to full implementation of its commitments, we will continue to enforce sanctions on the illicit sale of Iranian petroleum and petrochemicals,” he added in the statement.

In a press statement related to the DOT action, U.S. Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken said, “the United States has been sincere in pursuing a path of meaningful diplomacy to achieve a mutual return to full implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action”.

“Until Iran is ready to return to full implementation of the JCPOA, we will continue to use our sanctions authorities to target exports of petroleum, petroleum products, and petrochemical products from Iran,” he added.

On July 6, DOT announced that OFAC had sanctioned “an international network of individuals and entities that has used a web of Gulf-based front companies to facilitate the delivery and sale of hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of Iranian petroleum and petrochemical products from Iranian companies to East Asia”.

On June 16, DOT noted that OFAC had sanctioned “a network of Iranian petrochemical producers, as well as front companies in the People’s Republic of China and the United Arab Emirates that support Triliance Petrochemical Co. Ltd. and Iran’s Petrochemical Commercial Company, entities instrumental in brokering the sale of Iranian petrochemicals abroad”.

“This network helps effectuate international transactions and evade sanctions, supporting the sale of Iranian petrochemical products to customers in the PRC and the rest of East Asia,” DOT noted at the time.

To contact the author, email andreas.exarheas@rigzone.com


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