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EghtesadOnline: An Italian Foreign Ministry official says his country is reviewing details about the newly developed financial mechanism known as INSTEX and is considering joining it.

Manlio Di Stefano who met Gholamareza Ansari, Iran’s deputy foreign minister for economic affairs in Rome on Thursday, said in the current circumstances INSTEX is the best possible way for supporting small and medium sized companies.

He noted that Rome supports the financial channel between Iran and European Union, Tasnim reported. 

Stressing the importance of respecting commitments made in the historic agreement (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) between Iran and the six world powers, Ansari termed INSTEX a practical measure to enforcing European obligations as enshrined in the JCPOA, according to Financial Tribune.

He expressed the hope that normal trade ties would be restored after Iran’s trade partners, including Italy, join INSTEX. He urged Italian officials to ease the “extralegal” restrictions Italian banks have imposed on trade with Iran. 

French, German and UK foreign ministers announced the creation of INSTEX at the end of January, which they say is a new mechanism for "facilitating legitimate trade with Iran in order to preserve the Iran nuclear deal." 

Releasing a joint statement, the E3 foreign ministers Jean-Yves Le Drian of France, Heiko Maas from  Germany and the UK’s Jeremy Hunt, said the measure is in accordance with their resolute commitment and continued effort to preserve the JCPOA endorsed by United Nations Security Council. 

INSTEX stands for the Instrument for Supporting Trade Exchanges. 

The move was long overdue as it was originally planned to be launched last November and Tehran had expressed disappointment with the delay on more occasions than one.

According to the E3 statement, INSTEX will support legitimate EU trade with Iran, focusing initially on the sectors most essential to the Iranian population – such as pharmaceutical, medical devices and food.

INSTEX aims in the long term to be open to economic operators from third countries who wish to trade with Iran as the E3 continues to explore how best to achieve its stated goal.


Italy financial mechanism INSTEX Membership