Financial sanctions, Iran (nuclear proliferation)

Iran is currently subject to financial sanctions. This document contains the current list of designated persons relating to proliferation sensitive nuclear activities.


HM Treasury notice, 16/02/15 Iran (Nuclear Proliferation) (Reg 2015/230)

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In 2006, the UN Security Council imposed, amongst other matters, asset freeze restrictions on persons determined by the UN as engaging in, directly associating with, or providing support for, Iran’s proliferation-sensitive nuclear activities or the development of nuclear weapon delivery systems.

Between 2007 and 2012, the European Commission implemented further measures. In summary, the measures now in place involve the freezing of funds and economic resources of designated persons; restrictions on transfers of funds to and from an Iranian person, entity or body; vigilance over activities with Iranian banks; dealing with the Iranian banking sector; restrictions on Iran’s access to the EU’s insurance and reinsurance markets, restrictions on the provision of insurance and restrictions on financing certain Iranian enterprises and prohibitions on EU credit and financial institutions transferring funds to or from Iranian banks.

21 July 2014 – limited sanctions relief remains in place until 24 November 2014

The E3+3 and Iran have been engaged in intensive negotiations to reach a comprehensive agreement on Iran’s nuclear programme since February 2014. This was made possible by the agreement last November of the six-month Joint Plan of Action (JPoA), under which Iran and the E3+3 committed to a number of measures in order to create the time and space for a comprehensive negotiation.

Talks between the E3+3 and Iran have been productive, but more time is needed beyond 20 July 2014 to bridge the differences that remain. The E3+3 and Iran have therefore agreed to extend the Joint Plan of Action for a further four months until 24 November 2014.

The limited EU sanctions relief under the Joint Plan of Action will remain in place until 24 November 2014. No additional sanctions have been suspended. All other EU sanctions and restrictions remain in place and in force. The government’s position remains not to encourage trade with Iran.

In practice this means sanctions against Iran in EU Regulation 267/2012 (as amended), including the current thresholds for prior notification or prior notification of Iran transfers are unchanged. This guidance remains in force.

Iran (nuclear proliferation) – Supreme Court judgement in Bank Mellat v. Her Majesty’s Treasury (No. 2)

Judgement was handed down on 19 June 2013 in relation to Bank Mellat’s challenge to the Financial Restrictions (Iran) Order 2009 (SI 2009/2725). The Supreme Court found in favour of Bank Mellat. The Financial Restrictions (Iran) Order 2009 ceased to have effect in October 2010.

The Judgement does not affect the current EU asset freeze which remains in place against Bank Mellat. Banks and other financial institutions must continue to abide by the EU measure, and must apply all the financial restrictions that are imposed under EU Regulation 267/2012 as amended by EU Regulation 1263/2012.

Current EU regulations

Current UK regulations

Licence applications

You are able to download specific forms for licence applications and prior notification and authorisation applications for Iran. Licences authorise certain activities or types of transaction that would otherwise be prohibited by asset freezing legislation.