Outgoing Trump administration imposes new Iran-related sanctions

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
US President Donald Trump addresses a campaign rally in Dalton, Georgia, US, on the eve of the run-off election to decide both of Georgia's Senate seats on January 4, 2021. (Reuters photo)

The outgoing administration of US President Donald Trump has imposed Iran-related sanctions on several individuals and entities.

The US Treasury Department said on Tuesday it blacklisted a Chinese company that makes elements for steel production, 12 Iranian steel and metal makers and three foreign-based sales agents of a major Iranian metals and mining holding company, Reuters reported.  

In a statement, the Treasury identified the China-based company as Kaifeng Pingmei New Carbon Materials Technology Co Ltd. (KFCC).

The statement said that it manufactured carbon materials and delivered thousands of metric tons of materials to Iranian steel companies between December 2019 and June 2020.

Iran’s Pasargad Steel Complex and the Gilan Steel Complex Co are named among the 12 Iranian companies blacklisted by the US Treasury.

Iran-based Middle East Mines and Mineral Industries Development Holding Co (MIDHCO), Khazar Steel Co, Vian Steel Complex, South Rouhina Steel Complex, Yazd Industrial Constructional Steel Rolling Mill, West Alborz Steel Complex, Esfarayen Industrial Complex, Bonab Steel Industry Complex, Sirjan Iranian Steel and Zarand Iranian Steel Co. are the other companies named by the Treasury.

Trump’s Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in the statement, “The Trump Administration remains committed to denying revenue flowing to the Iranian” government.

Trump, a hawkish critic of the landmark 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and six world powers, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), unilaterally withdrew Washington from the agreement in May 2018, and unleashed the “toughest ever” sanctions against the Islamic Republic in defiance of global criticism.

Washington reinstated the sanctions that it had lifted once it became a JCPOA member, and also started to force other countries into committing to the bans and stopping their trade with Tehran.

The US unleashed the so-called maximum pressure campaign and targeted the Iranian nation with draconian restrictive measures in order to bring it to its knees, but Iran's economy keeps humming and is getting back on its feet.

However, the winner of the disputed 2020 US election, Joe Biden, has said that he remains committed to the principles of the Iran nuclear deal.

In an interview with CNN last month, Biden denounced Trump's withdrawal from the JCPOA.

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