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Chinese And Asian Banks Curtailed Ties To Iran - Iranian Official

An official of Iran’s Chamber of Commerce (ICC) says that China has imposed further restrictions on banking ties to his country.

Ali Shariati, a member of ICC told Iranian News Agency ILNA on November 14, that bank accounts belonging to Iranian businessman in China, Dubai, and Malaysia have been also “blocked” in recent days.

“China had limited its banking ties to us since weeks, but the restrictions have been boosted after the recent trip of U.S. president Donald Trump to Beijing”, Shariati added.

According to him, even students in Malaysia have been affected by the recent development. Malaysian banks have told “Iranian businessmen and students that they cannot provide services to them”, he said.

“Unfortunately, two years after the nuclear agreement, the Iranian businessman are still facing banking problems and many big banks are not ready to do business with Iran”, Shariati reiterated.

Last month, Iranian media had reported about similar restrictions by Chinese major banks including Agriculture Bank of China and Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC). However, based on a report by Mehr News Agency, the measures by Chinese banks had nothing to do with the U.S. sanctions.

On October 28, Mehr quoted Chinese officials as saying that the restrictions were caused by enforcing stricter regulations on Chinese banks as part of (Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering) FATF, an intergovernmental anti-corruption and money laundering body created by the Group of Seven leading industrial countries in 1989.

Following the 2015 nuclear agreement between Iran and six world powers, all U.N. sanctions related to Iran’s nuclear program were lifted. But international companies and banks are still hesitant to do business with Tehran due to fear of violating unilateral sanctions imposed by United States against Iran.

President Trump said on October 13 he would not certify Iran’s compliance with the international agreement to curtail its nuclear program, and his administration imposed new economic sanctions in July against several Iranian entities and individuals over its ballistic missile program.

The Trump administration has also said Tehran’s “malign activities” in the Middle East undercut any “positive contributions” coming from the 2015 Iran nuclear accord.

After Saudi Arabia intercepted a ballistic missile fired by Houthi rebels in Yemen on November 4th, United States and France accused Iran of supplying the missile to the Houthis. French President Emmanuel Macron even spoke of possible international sanctions against Tehran over its missile program.