Declaring sanctions against Iran the “most biting ever imposed,” President Trump on Tuesday vowed to go after any companies worldwide that continue to do business with Iran, sanctioning them and forbid them access to the American market.
Trump’s threats appear to have had some effect already, with Daimler AG, a German automaker, announcing that they are going freeze plans to open a manufacturing site in Iran to make trucks.
ATR just finished delivering planes to Iran, on the other hand, and Sanofi says they don’t envision any impact from the US sanctions. The EU has passed laws pledging to protect their companies from penalties suffered for not abiding by US sanctions, but clearly some companies, particularly major ones, are skeptical about how much that promise is worth.
Clearly, European company are very split on the question of Iran trade right now. There are clearly risks in doing business there with President Trump so determined to punish them over it. At the same time, there is a lot of money to be made, and a clear legal basis for continuing to trade.
Other countries have been more uniform in their reaction to the US, with China ruling out abiding by the sanctions. Iraq, by contrast, said they disagree with the US sanctions, but feel they have no choice but to obey.