German-Iranian chamber of commerce speaks out against new sanctions

By Thomson Reuters Apr 17, 2024 | 3:17 AM

BERLIN (Reuters) – The German-Iranian chamber of commerce spoke out against new sanctions against the Islamic Republic in response to its attack on Israel, according to a letter sent to members and friends of the organization seen by Reuters on Wednesday.

“As always, calls for new sanctions come fast, but they serve to mask Europe’s lack of influence rather than be part of a solution,” the letter dated April 15 said.

The “special relationship” that once existed between Germany and Iran has neither been maintained nor cultivated by Berlin, leading to a loss of influence, said the chamber, with the “key players still in Washington and increasingly Beijing.”

European Union foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said on Tuesday that some member states had asked for sanctions against Iran to be expanded and that the bloc’s diplomatic service would begin working on the proposal.

He said the proposal would expand a sanctions regime that seeks to curb the supply of Iranian drones to Russia so that it would also include the provision of missiles and could also cover deliveries to Iranian proxies in the Middle East.

Bilateral trade between Germany and Iran had fallen significantly last year, with German exports slumping by more than 24% to 1.2 billion euros ($1.28 billion), while imports from Iran decreased by 18% to 247 million euros.

($1 = 0.9410 euros)

(Reporting by Rene Wagner, writing Andrey Sychev, editing by Miranda Murray)