Iran Sanctions: Gold and Precious Metals

The U.S. had imposed Iran-related, primary and secondary sanctions against those in the gold and other precious metals industry, with the goal of discouraging folks in that industry from dealing with Iran.

JPOA Sanctions Relief for Gold

The JPOA relief period provides temporary suspension of some of the sanctions targeting this industry, including the secondary sanctions which discourage foreign parties in this industry from doing business with Iran.

During the JPOA relief period, the United States will allow the sale of gold and other precious metals to and from Iran. It will also allow non-U.S. persons not otherwise subject to the ITSR to provide associated services involving payable-through account sanctions and blocking sanctions.

Correspondent and Payable-Through Accounts

The U.S. government will not impose correspondent or payable-through account sanctions under Section 3(a)(i) of Executive Order 13645 with respect to foreign financial institutions which conduct or facilitate transactions by non-U.S. persons not otherwise subject to the ITSR, for the purchase or acquisition of precious metals to or from Iran, that are initiated and completed entirely within the JPOA relief period. This is provided that the funds for these purchases of gold and other precious metals may not be drawn from restricted funds. A further restriction is that transactions do not involve persons on the SDN list, other than any political subdivision, agency, or instrumentality of the government of Iran or any Iranian bank listed solely pursuant to Executive Order 13599. This relief stays in place until Implementation Day, when it is replaced with the analogous sanctions relief as detailed in the JCPOA.

Blocking Sanctions

The U.S. government will not impose blocking sanctions under Section 5(a) of Executive Order 13622 or Sections 2(a)(i) and (ii) of Executive Order 13645 and Section 56211(c)(ii) of the Iranian Transactions and Sanctions Regulations. This applies to persons who materially assist, sponsor, or provide financial, material, or technological support for, or goods or services in support of, the purchase or acquisition of precious metals to or from Iran or by the government of Iran. It only applies if such activities are initiated and completed entirely within the JPOA relief period, the funds for these purchases of gold and other precious metals are not drawn from restricted funds, and the transactions do not involve persons on the SDN list other than a political subdivision, agency, or instrumentality of the government of Iran or Iranian banks listed solely pursuant to Executive 13599. Again, this relief stays in place until Implementation Day when it is replaced with the analogous sanctions relief under the JCPOA.

JCPOA Sanctions Relief on Precious Metals

The JCPOA sanctions relief will extend the sanctions relief first implemented pursuant to the JPOA which involved the gold and precious metals industry. The JCPOA relief largely extends and makes permanent the JPOA relief on this issue for the life of the JCPOA agreement. Again, those who stand to benefit most are foreign persons who will no longer be restricted by EU and UN sanctions or discouraged by US secondary sanctions.