UAE banks block Iranian accounts for CFT rejection – official

Business Materials 11 November 2018 12:50 (UTC +04:00)

Tehran, Iran, Nov.11


Due to the rejection of Combating the Financing of Terrorism (CFT) bill, UAE banks have blocked more than 1,500 Iranian bank accounts and their condition to re-open the accounts is joining the Financial Action Task Force(FATF), the head of Iran - UAE Chamber of commerce Masoud Daneshmand said in an interview with Trend.

According to Daneshmand, rejection of CFT bill has become problematic for some of the Iranians in the UAE.

“The UAE banks have blocked the accounts of Iranian companies involved in financial affair with Iran and their excuse was UAE’s membership in Financial Act Task Force (FATF),” he said.

“The Emirati bankers said that any financial transfer must be transparent and within the framework of FATF, and since Iran is not a member of it, they cannot have any bank account in UAE,” he added.

"This measure by UAE banks includes blocking nearly 1,500 accounts which mainly belong to companies, individuals and legal entities.”

“Since there is no active Iranian bank in the UAE, the blocking does not involve them,” he said. “Although Iran's Melli and Saderat Bank have branches in the UAE, they have been inactive for many years."

The head of Iran - UAE Chamber of commerce noted solving the problem depends on the approval of FATF bill in the Parliament.

Referring to the necessity of ratification of FATF bills in Iran parliament he said that the UAE`s request is quite clear. Given the fact that 40 percent of the share of National Bank of Dubai (NBD), the largest bank in the UAE, belongs to the United States, the bank is under pressure of the US."

Iran's Guardian Council on Sunday rejected a bill on joining the UN convention against terrorist financing.

"The Guardian Council has in several sessions reviewed the bill and it has considered it to have flaws and ambiguities," wrote spokesman Abbas Ali Kadkhodaie on Twitter.

The bill, passed by parliament on October 7, is one of four put forward by the government of President Hassan Rouhani in order to meet demands set by the international Financial Action Task Force (FATF).