Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre Comments on Adopted Sanctions Against Iran

January 14, 2011

The Government decided on January 14 to impose more stringent sanctions and measures against Iran, taking UN Security Council resolution 1929 (2010) as its basis. This means a ban on trade in a number of categories of goods and a ban on exports of equipment and technology to the Iranian oil and gas sector. "This brings Norwegian legislation in line with EU legislation, and will contribute to increasing international pressure on Iran's nuclear programme," commented Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre.

In deciding to adopt further measures against Iran, Norway is following the EU countries. Sanctions imposed by the UN Security Council in June 2010 form the backdrop to these additional measures. The tougher sanctions and measures include a ban on trade in more categories of goods than before, and a ban on exports of key equipment and technology and associated services to the oil and gas sector in Iran. The measures also target financial transactions. The list of persons, entities and bodies subject to asset freezes has also been extended considerably.

"The sanctions are a direct consequence of Iran's failure thus far to comply with previous Security Council resolutions, and of its failure to cooperate fully with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), as required under its international obligations," Mr Støre said.

On 27 July 2010, the Norwegian authorities decided that Norway would align itself with the EU's additional measures. One important reason for adapting Norwegian legislation to bring it in line with EU legislation is to ensure that the same rules apply to Norwegian companies and companies in the EU.

On 25 October 2010, an implementing regulation (Council Regulation (EU) No 961/2010) was adopted by the EU. The amendment regulations that were adopted by the Government today implement the additional sanctions and measures in Norwegian law. The wording of the regulations is close to that of the EU regulation with a view to harmonising Norwegian legislation with that of the EU.

Any violations of the provisions of the regulations are punishable by fines or imprisonment. The additional sanctions and measures will enter into force when they are announced, on 18 January.

The regulations are available here (in Norwegian only):