France will push to create the necessary mechanisms to allow EU countries to maintain trade with Iran following the re-introduction of US sanctions on November 5, France’s Minister of Finance, Bruno Le Maire, said in an interview with the Financial Times (FT).
“Europe refuses to allow the US to be the trade policeman of the world,” Le Maire told the FT.
The minister confirmed that the EU is planning to create a special purpose vehicle (SPV) independent of the US financial system. This would permit companies to continue trading with Iran without fear of retaliatory action from the US.
EU member states have so far not been granted sanctions exemptions from the US. Major European companies such as Total and Peugeot have pulled out of the country as a result.
EU spokeswoman for foreign affairs, Maja Kocijanic, told reporters on Wednesday that the EU has “accelerated” its work to set up the SPV, Bloomberg reported.
Le Maire said that he wants the SPV to become a “real intergovernmental institution” over time, which would facilitate independent European economic policy.