Japan, France propose $18.4Bln loan plan to Iran if in compliance with JCPOA – Reports

UrduPoint News / Sputnik – Japan and France have proposed a joint plan to provide Iran with a loan of about $18.4 billion to be secured by oil if Tehran returns to compliance with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), media reported.

According to the Mainichi newspaper, the government of Japan decided to support France’s initiative announced this summer to provide Iran with assistance in the amount of $15 billion after Tehran demanded an increase in loan volumes to compensate for the negative impact of tougher sanctions, and increase this amount to about $18.42 billion.

The media outlet added that the Japanese authorities were hoping in this way to smooth out the possible dissatisfaction with Tokyo’s plans of sending two ships of the Japanese Self-Defense Forces to the Strait of Hormuz. In addition, according to the newspaper’s sources, the Japanese government believes that financial support could help start a dialogue between Iran and the United States on the nuclear issue.

It is assumed that loan guarantees would be provided at the expense of oil, and the targeted use of finance will be limited to purchases of food and medicine.

The plan to reduce tension between Washington and Tehran was announced by French President Emmanuel Macron at a meeting with US President Donald Trump on the sidelines of the G7 summit in summer.

Macron had urged Trump to consider steps that would allow Tehran to increase oil exports, which could finally help Iran’s ailing economy. The idea was to let Iran sell at least 700,000 barrels of oil per day, which is almost two times higher than its current oil export. The second point of this plan was to provide a loan of about $15 billion to Iran, so that the country could use the hard Currency bypassing US sanctions.

The JCPOA was signed in 2015 by Iran, China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, the United States, Germany and the European Union. It required Iran to scale back its nuclear program and severely downgrade its uranium reserves in exchange for sanctions relief. In 2018, the United States abandoned its conciliatory policy on Iran, withdrawing from the JCPOA and hitting Iranian petroleum industries with sanctions, prompting criticism from its allies in Europe.