Iran: Financial Institutions

Treasury written question – answered at on 22 March 2024.

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Photo of Iain Duncan Smith Iain Duncan Smith Conservative, Chingford and Woodford Green

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps he has taken to investigate (a) Bank Saderat PLC, (b) Melli Bank PLC and (c) other Iranian financial institutions based in the UK with links to the Iranian Government.

Photo of Iain Duncan Smith Iain Duncan Smith Conservative, Chingford and Woodford Green

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps he is taking to ensure that UK financial institutions comply with UK sanctions against Iran.

Photo of Iain Duncan Smith Iain Duncan Smith Conservative, Chingford and Woodford Green

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps he plans to take to hold to account UK-based (a) entities and (b) people continuing to deal with the (i) Iranian Government and (ii) IRGC in breach of UK sanctions.

Photo of Bim Afolami Bim Afolami The Economic Secretary to the Treasury

The Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation (OFSI) is the authority responsible for implementing and enforcing the UK’s financial sanctions on behalf of HM Treasury.

On 14 December 2023, the UK announced a new sanctions regime that gives the UK extensive new powers to disrupt and deter Iran’s hostile activities in the UK and around the world. This has been developed to respond to unprecedented threats from the Iranian regime, including efforts to undermine peace and security across the Middle East and plots to kill individuals on UK soil. Overall, the UK has designated over 400 Iranian individuals and entities including in relation to Iran’s destabilising regional activity, human rights abuses, and nuclear proliferation.

OFSI assesses every instance of reported non-compliance and will act in all cases where we conclude a breach has occurred. OFSI does not comment on specific cases.

Non-compliance with UK sanctions is a serious offence and punishable through disclosures, large financial penalties, or criminal prosecution. Departments from across HMG including FCDO, HMT, OFSI, HMRC, HO, and the NCA, are working together, and with UK companies, to ensure that sanctions are enforced.

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