European powers, including France, Germany and Britain are willing to maintain the landmark 2015 Iran nuclear accord while pushing for talks encompassing a wider format which includes Iran’s ballistic missile program and its activities in Yemen and Syria.
On Friday, German Economy Minister Peter Altmaier stated, Germany is willing to help German business houses minimize the impact the U.S. withdrawal of the 2015 Iran nuclear accord.
“We are ready to talk to all the companies concerned about what we can do to minimize the negative consequences,” said Altmaier to Deutschlandfunk radio. “That means, it is concretely about damage limitation.”
Germany had no immediate reason to change its Hermes export guarantee scheme for Iran.
“At the moment, there is no reason to change the valued Hermes scheme,” said Altmaier. “We are just starting a conversation about what the economic implications are, and how we can avoid negative consequences for jobs in Germany.”
Altmaier said although Germany had no legal means to protect German companies that do business in the U.S. “What we are doing, however, is to assist and advise these(German) companies active in Iran, which want to be active in Iran and to advise them, including legally”.
With regard to simmering tensions with the United States over Iran, Altmaier said, “It is rather like the trade conflict with regard to the announced tariffs for steel and aluminum… We must avoid entering into a spiral of escalation.”
On Thursday, German Chancellor Angela Merkel told Iranian President Hassan Rouhani in a telephone call, that she had supported the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement as long as Tehran upheld its side of the bargain.
On Wednesday, French President Emmanuel Macron conveyed the same message to Rouhani as well.
France, Germany and Britain want talks to be held through a broader format on Iran’s ballistic missile program and its regional activities, including in Yemen and Syria.