As President Obama has made clear, the United States will continue to vigorously implement our existing sanctions on Iran as the P5+1 seeks to negotiate a comprehensive deal with Iran that will resolve the international community’s concerns regarding Iran’s nuclear program.
That is why I am pleased to announce that, based on additional significant reductions in the volume of their purchases of Iranian crude oil, China, India, the Republic of Korea, Turkey, and Taiwan have again qualified for an exception to sanctions outlined in Section 1245 of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2012.
These additional reductions were determined based on an analysis of these economies’ purchasing activity over the previous six months.
Additionally, Malaysia, South Africa, Singapore, and Sri Lanka have also qualified again for the NDAA exception because they no longer purchase crude oil from Iran.
As a result, I will report to the Congress that exceptions to sanctions pursuant to Section 1245 of the NDAA for certain transactions will apply to the financial institutions based in these countries for a potentially renewable period of 180 days.
This is the fourth time that these nine economies have qualified for an NDAA exception as a result of their continued significant reductions in the volume of crude oil purchases from Iran or their end to such purchases.
The effectiveness of the international sanctions regime has proven essential in bringing Iran to the table to negotiate and agree to the Joint Action Plan that, for the first time in nearly a decade, halts the progress of the Iranian nuclear program and rolls it back in key areas.
As part of the Joint Action Plan agreed to by the P5+1 and Iran, we will pause for six months our efforts to further reduce Iran's crude oil sales. However, the Joint Action Plan does not offer relief from sanctions with respect to any increases in Iranian crude oil purchases by existing customers or any purchases by new customers.
We will continue to aggressively enforce our sanctions over the next six months, as we work to determine whether there is a comprehensive solution that gives us confidence that the Iranian nuclear program is for exclusively peaceful purposes.