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‘Iran’s state banks to join SWIFT once JCPOA comes into effect’

27 July 2015 16:26




An official at the Central Bank of Iran (CBI) says the country’s state-run banks will soon rejoin the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) once Iran’s nuclear agreement with the world powers enters into effect.

Gholamali Kamyab, deputy governor of the CBI for foreign exchange affairs, told IRNA on Sunday that according to plans made by the Iranian government, state-run banks will rejoin the SWIFT once the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) reached between Iran and the P5+1 group of countries in Vienna earlier this month enters into effect.

SWIFT is a global supplier of secure messaging services, which is used by nearly every bank around the world to send payment messages that lead to the transfer of money across international borders.

In early 2012, SWIFT announced that under pressure from the European Union, it had decided to discontinue communications services to Iranian banks and financial institutions that are subject to European sanctions. Accordingly, it blocked 30 Iranian banks from using its services, literally cutting off Iran from the global banking system.

On July 14, Iran and the P5+1 group – the US, the UK, Germany, France, China, and Russia – reached the conclusion of negotiations over Tehran’s civilian nuclear program, with the Islamic Republic and the sextet sealing an agreement.

According to the agreement, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, all economic and financial sanctions against Iran will be removed. In addition, all bans on Iran’s Central Bank, shipping, oil industry, and many other companies will be lifted.

Kamyab added that at present, all Iranian private banks are connected to the SWIFT and those state-run banks that are subject to EU’s sanctions will join the network in the near future.

“Private banks were not covered by European Union’s sanctions against Iran and could avail themselves of the services provided by the SWIFT,” he said.

According to IRNA, Iranian private banks including Dei, Saman, Pasargad, Parsian, and Middle East, in addition to two state-run banks, Maskan (Housing) and Agriculture are currently connected to the SWIFT network.

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