SWIFT Says Iranian Banks Can Reconnect to Worldwide Financial Services


The global provider of secure financial messaging services said implementation of the recent Iran deal, known as Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), requires financial sanctions on Iran are lifted.

“The Iran nuclear agreement (JCPOA) agreed by China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States; plus Germany (P5+1), the EU and Iran on 14 July, and endorsed by UN Security Council Resolution 2231 on 20 July, requires that some sanctions on Iran are lifted, including the EU nuclear-related financial messaging restrictions that were exceptionally imposed on Iranian banks under EU Regulation in March 2012,” the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) said in a statement on its official website on Sunday.

It added that on 18 October, the EU Council adopted legislation, including a Council Implementing Regulation, which provides for the lifting of the related EU sanctions specified in the JCPOA, including these financial messaging restrictions, once the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has verified Iran’s implementation of the nuclear-related measures set out in the JCPOA.

“The EU has announced that the Implementing Legislation has taken effect. SWIFT has informed the relevant stakeholders about the necessary measures that need to be put in place to make it possible for those banks that are delisted by the Implementing Regulation to reconnect to SWIFT. As previously stated, those banks that are delisted by the Implementing Regulation will now automatically be able to reconnect to SWIFT, following the completion of our normal connection process (i.e. administrative and systems checks, connectivity and technical arrangements).”

The statement, however, said that the Implementing Regulation does not repeal all EU sanctions on all Iranian banks, therefore SWIFT remains prohibited from providing specialised financial messaging services to the EU-sanctioned Iranian banks that remain listed under EU Regulation.

SWIFT is incorporated under Belgian law and has to comply with related EU regulation, as confirmed by the Belgian government.

An Iranian official had earlier said that the country will reconnect to SWIFT by the end of January.

Head of Iran Chamber of Commerce Mohsen Jalalpour told reporters in Tehran on Sunday that today Iran will re-apply to join the SWIFT.

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