Iran wary as EU presents plans to save nuclear deal

Canete called the nuclear deal "fundamental for peace in the region" as he outlined EU plans to continue oil and gas purchases and protect European companies from US sanctions as they are phased in over the next six months.

Iran wary as EU presents plans to save nuclear deal

World Bulletin / News Desk

Iran said Saturday it would wait to see whether Europe produces tangible results in overcoming US sanctions before it decides whether to stay in the nuclear deal, as a top EU official visited Tehran to present plans for maintaining trade ties.

"The ball is in the court of the EU. They have presented different proposals, we will see if they materialise," said the head of Iran's Atomic Energy Organisation, Ali Akbar Salehi.

He was speaking after meeting European Union Energy Commissioner Miguel Arias Canete, the first high-level Western official to visit Iran since the US withdrew from the 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers earlier this month.

He also had detailed talks with Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh on practical solutions, which he said included plans for direct payments between central banks and state-backed insurance for shipments.

A group of experts later met their Iranian counterparts to hash out the details.

Zanganeh said there were no plans to change Iran's pattern of oil exports, which amount to 3.8 million barrels per day, with 70 percent going to Asia and 20 percent to Europe.

Salehi acknowledged Europe's efforts to protect trade but said: "We want tangible results, otherwise we take our own decisions. I personally don't want to see such decisions being taken."

Iran has threatened to resume industrial uranium enrichment "without limit" unless its interests are preserved by the remaining parties to the deal, which also include China and Russia.

Salehi said the Iranian people had lost trust in the nuclear agreement and that if trade benefits were not protected "they will lose more confidence... and we will be forced to leave."

Güncelleme Tarihi: 20 Mayıs 2018, 17:14