Nothing has yet changed, for all the excitement caused by the agreement to end Iranian sanctions, signed by Tehran and the P5+1 group of six international powers in July. No sanctions have been removed and none will be until the United Nations’ nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), confirms that Iran has met its side of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) by scaling back nuclear activities. When that happens, on the JCPOA’s ‘Implementation Day’, some elements of the trade embargo will be lifted, but many restrictions will remain, as credit insurers and trade financiers have understood since the deal was agreed.
It is not yet clear when Implementation Day will fall, although most expect it to happen in H1 16 – possibly as soon as Q1 16. At that point, there will be two distinct groups of international companies: US firms, for whom not much will change, and European Union companies, who have been flooding into Tehran.
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