By Eurasia Business News – May 20, 2018

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Paris, view on Eiffel Tower – Photo credit : S. Bigot

French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire stated on May 20 that the European Union could compensate European companies that might be facing US sanctions for doing business with Iran, reported Reuters.

Bruno Le Maire referred to EU regulation dated 1996 which could allow the European Union to intervene to shield European companies against any U.S. sanctions. These rules allowed companies to ignore US sanctions and blocked the enforcement in the EU jurisdiction of rulings by foreign courts over such restrictive measures.

These rules were adopted in 1996, when the United States tried to sanction foreign companies trading with Cuba. Brussels eventually forced Washington to back down by threatening countermeasures.

Read also : The “Kremlin report” and the shadow of new US sanctions against Russia

French Finance Minister now speaks about financial compensation and added that France wanted the EU to toughen its stance on the issue.

Are we going to allow the United States to be the economic policeman of the world? The answer is no,” Le Maire stated on Europe 1 french radio on May 20.

These words by the French Finance Minister may indicate the will to a more independent European foreign policy, in order to defend the economic sovereignty of the Member States of the EU, as the commercial competition with the US remains a strong reality, remembered by the decision of the US President Donald Trump to introduce tariffs on steel and aluminum from the Europe.

European firms doing business in Iran face US sanctions after President Trump announced on May 8 that the United States will withdraw from the 2015 nuclear agreement with Iran.

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