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EU sanctions

EU renews its economic sanctions against Russia, despite growing opposition

On 1 July 2016, the EU Council renewed the economic sanctions targeting specific sectors of the Russian economy, until 31 January 2017. The so-called “phase 3 sanctions”, which were adopted on 31 July 2014 and due to expire on 31 July 2016, specifically target Russia’s financial sector, by limiting the access to capital markets of its major financial institutions. The…

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Export controls as a toolbox for human rights policy

There is an undeniable tendency to use export control regulations for the human rights agenda of the EU and its Member States. The latter enforce their goals, not only by taking advantage of the possibilities under the current export control framework but also by reconstructing this framework towards a human security approach. The crucial question is whether this is a…

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What about the banks – are we seeing the first signs of genuine business with Iran?

There is growing frustration in Iran and Europe about the slow pace of reconnecting Tehran to the global financial system. This even led to a recent joint statement by the P5 +1 nations that negotiated the JCPOA explicitly underlining that they will not “stand in the way of permitted business activity with Iran, and will not stand in the way…

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Trade controls and M&A: how to preserve the value of your transaction?

The substantial risk associated with the expansion and enhanced enforcement of trade controls has a direct impact on due diligence in cross-border M&A transactions Non-compliance by the target with international trade laws and regulations may not only have a material adverse impact on the value of the transaction, it may also trigger the vendor and even buyer’s liability, and affect…

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Snapback and the potential for re-imposing the sanctions against Iran

Among the provisions of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), one that has been touted by the United States as a key provision and which received much attention is the “snapback” provision. Set forth in Article 37 of the JCPOA, the snapback provision is part of the dispute resolution mechanism set forth in the document. It provides the basis…

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The struggle of financial institutions in dealing with financial sanctions

Adopted in order to pursue foreign policy objectives, financial sanctions have become a source of increasing difficulty for financial institutions over the past few years. The ever growing number of applicable regimes tied to the international agenda is now also coupled with tighter enforcement measures. The opening on 31 March 2016, of the Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation (OFSI) in…

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