Cooperation can help ease and avoid impact of US move in Iran nuclear deal

By Hu Weijia Source:Global Times Published: 2018/6/4 22:23:40

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani is reportedly scheduled to visit China later this week to attend the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit along with his Chinese and Russian counterparts. This event will offer a chance to promote collaboration after US President Donald Trump pulled his country out of the Iran nuclear deal.

In May, Trump signed an executive memorandum that reportedly started a 180-day countdown for the US government to re-impose all the economic sanctions on Iran that were relaxed under the nuclear deal.

However, any sanctions would probably have a negligible effect on Iran's economic partners.

Companies trading with Iran may be hit with US unilateral action. France-based Airbus, German carmaker Volkswagen and other enterprises that are Iran's economic partners are most exposed to losses from Trump's renewed effort to isolate Iran.

What's more, the US is trying to choke off Iran's economic lifeline by cutting its crude oil exports, giving its buyers 180 days to extricate themselves from Iranian oil deals. If the US imposes sanctions on Iranian oil exports, companies from many countries may suffer big losses due to oil-price volatility.

In an attempt to protect EU companies doing business with Iran, the EU is trying to reactivate a law that would prevent EU companies from complying with US sanctions. For its part, the Chinese government is accelerating its work to safeguard the interests of Chinese companies. We believe Russia and other SCO members will spare no efforts to protect their companies, but the effect of their efforts may be limited if every party goes its own way without coordination.

The best way to salvage the Iran nuclear deal is by promoting collaboration among major powers.

The European Commission is proposing that EU governments make direct money transfers to Iran's central bank to avoid US penalties, according to Reuters. Such plans can be discussed by other countries including China and Russia, and those nations can offer proposals to map out a joint action plan.

Iran's participation in the talks is necessary. The upcoming SCO summit will hopefully provide a platform to properly handle relevant sensitive issues regarding Iran.

When it comes to China and Russia, two founding powers of the SCO, their common interests outweigh their differences on the Iran issue.

If countries can promote collaboration after the withdrawal of the US from the nuclear deal, we can minimize everyone's losses.

A joint plan will be the most powerful counterattack against US unilateral action, letting Washington know it cannot do whatever it wants.

The author is a reporter with the Global Times.


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