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Pakistan lifts sanctions against Iran

Published Feb 19, 2016 08:40pm


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The meeting chaired by Minister of Finance Ishaq Dar ruled that Pakistan had welcomed the Joint Comprehensive Programme of Action (JCPOA) agreed between Iran and world powers.─ Photo: PID
The meeting chaired by Minister of Finance Ishaq Dar ruled that Pakistan had welcomed the Joint Comprehensive Programme of Action (JCPOA) agreed between Iran and world powers.─ Photo: PID

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has decided to lift sanctions against Iran and has devised a strategy to promote trade ties with the oil rich country, a ministerial meeting decided on Friday, DawnNews reported.

According to a notification issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Islamabad will revive all economic and commercial relations with Tehran, including the areas of trade, investment, technology, banking, finance, energy.

All the previous notifications giving effect to sanctions imposed on Iran by UN Security Council stand repealed with the issuance of this new notification by the foreign ministry, in keeping with the Security Council resolution 2231.

The meeting chaired by Minister of Finance Ishaq Dar ruled that Pakistan had welcomed the Joint Comprehensive Programme of Action (JCPOA) agreed between Iran and world powers and it appreciates the steps taken by Iran for the implementation of the JCPOA.

Related: What the Iran deal means for the world

With the lifting of restrictions, economic and trade relations between the two neighbourly countries will receive a new boost.

It will enable the two countries to fully reinvigorate various bilateral and multilateral arrangements for promoting investments and cooperation in across all sectors including banking, finance, industry and energy.

Diplomatic efforts to reach a comprehensive, long-term and proper solution to the Iranian nuclear issue culminated in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) concluded on 14 July 2015 by China, France, Germany, the Russian Federation, the United Kingdom, the United States, the High Representative of the European Union (the E3/EU+3) and the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Related: Iran, major powers reach historic nuclear deal in Vienna, diplomats confirm

On July 20, 2015, the Security Council unanimously adopted resolution 2231 (2015) endorsing the JCPOA, which calls for promoting and facilitating the development of normal economic and trade contacts and cooperation with Iran, and having regard to States’ rights and obligations relating to international trade


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Comments (81) Closed

mub Feb 19, 2016 08:45pm

Looks like its bit late.Other countries have already taken the advantage and doing big business contracts with Iran.At least gas pipeline project should be completed asap.

Sharique Feb 19, 2016 08:45pm

It can be a start of new era and both neighbours can benefit mutually from each other.

I wonder how will Pakistan's Saudia allies react to this change.

Shah, Canada Feb 19, 2016 08:53pm

NO mention of Iran - Pakistan gas pipeline. Of course not big kickbacks in LNG deals.

MAlvi Feb 19, 2016 08:54pm

@Sharique Pakistan should not worry about Saudia, but take care of it's interests.

Karachitee Feb 19, 2016 09:00pm

Neighbors first Brothers later ! mantra for success.

Shakil Feb 19, 2016 09:01pm

Ditch the expensive LNG with its import and then re gasification costs! Just attach pipe to Iranian completed pipeline at border!

Adnan Mazher Khan Feb 19, 2016 09:03pm

Good opportunity for business in Iran.

Ahmed Haneef Feb 19, 2016 09:07pm

@mub .. You are right it is too late. Actually Nawaz government was waiting for approval of house if Saudi.

AKB Feb 19, 2016 09:08pm

Why Pakistan had to cut off trade ties when some other countries maintained it even during sanctions.

Muhammed Ali UK Feb 19, 2016 09:09pm

1st and foremost Pakistan, Israel gets $6 billion a year from the USA yet when Obama ASKS them to stop building settlements so that we could proceed with peace talks they tell him sorry but no! We should grow some backbone..

N_Saq Feb 19, 2016 09:10pm

Seriously, this guy (Ishaq Dar) just woke up! China, Russia, West and India has already signed billions and billions dollars worth of deals with Iran plus the Iranian President visited the whole Europe making economic deals and this guy just realizes that the sanctions have been lifted on Iran. Was he living under a stone?

What is this guy now looking for? All Pak is going to get now is crumbs because the Iranian pie is already eaten by the rest of the world. This is what happens when you have leaders whose loyalty does not lie with the nation. PMLN is in the pockets of KSA and seems like they have no clue how to protect Pak interests. Again this is what happens when the elected representatives personal interests are above that of the country.

Indian Feb 19, 2016 09:18pm

@Karachitee did u mean India first and Saudi second.

M.Saeed Feb 19, 2016 09:19pm

@mub : Dar was looking for his own cup of tea !

Abdullah Feb 19, 2016 09:19pm

Start exporting cars to Iran, Afghanistan ....Pak Suzuki, Atlas Honda and Indus Toyota should wake up and improve their standards......

M.Saeed Feb 19, 2016 09:21pm

@Sharique : Saudi Arabia is fast losing its oil-charm after the recent crash of oil prices. Very soon it would start looking for its own bread and butter in Pakistan.

Abdullah Feb 19, 2016 09:22pm

Build a oil pipeline direct from Iran to Quetta to cut down on transportation costs....

Sasa Feb 19, 2016 09:24pm

Does lifting the sanctions matter to Iran? Iran is still has a stronger economy than any Asian neighbors except China.

Ahmed Haneef Feb 19, 2016 09:27pm

@Karachitee ...Agreed. But Iran is a neighbour as well as strong Islamic brother country facing aggression from world power due to its practical support to Palestinian cause and real resistance to Israel

india_first Feb 19, 2016 09:29pm

tooo late ? India stood by Iran showing strategic depth

Bin Adam Feb 19, 2016 09:30pm

Iran and Saudi Arabia are equally dearer to the people of Pakistan. Their conflicts and proxy wars has only inflicted grave damage to Ummah. They should join hands in eradicating all sorts of terrorists including the religious extremists and radicals in the larger interest of the region and the humanity at large.

The Outsider Feb 19, 2016 09:35pm

I don't understand. Everyone knew sanctions would be lifted approx 6 months ago, China not only lifted sanctions but already signed deals worth 100 billion as did the EU and PML decided to wake up and lift sanctions just today? Is this a PML a real govt or do they think this is a playstation game?

Pakistanfirst2 Feb 19, 2016 09:39pm

@Shakil The LNG coming from Qatar is cheaper even with the overhead. We should go ahead with Gas pipeline but Iran has to offer better rates.

Baaligh Feb 19, 2016 09:43pm

@mub : Although fairly late but let's hope the matter does not remain confined to just announcement. Remains to be seen how soon next / further steps are taken to off-set the delayed announcement.

desida Feb 19, 2016 09:50pm

NS people looted the country with Qatar LNG deal with commission. Iran gas would have been cheep, but now it is for China business at Gwadar not Pakistani people.

sam Feb 19, 2016 09:50pm

good move,

Khan143 Feb 19, 2016 09:52pm

Iran must be so relieved now.

M.Saeed Feb 19, 2016 09:54pm

@Pakistanfirst2 : How can Iran offer better rates when better part of the rates have to be separated and siphoned to the personal coffers?

The Outsider Feb 19, 2016 09:54pm

@N_Saq Exactly. This is exactly the problem and why ordinary PK still suffer. In the mean time I assure you that PML ministers bank accounts are growing exponentially.

بازیچه اطفال Feb 19, 2016 09:56pm

Well Pakistan is an important country and Iran wants to mend ties with its Eastern neighbour... Even if the decision is late Pakistan enjoys the advantage of proximity in this relationship and should look for an overhaul in its policies with Iran.

Coleman Feb 19, 2016 09:59pm

@Ahmed Haneef Please tell Iran that there are Muslims living in Kashmir too and at the very least not be India's largest oil and gas exporter. We all want peace for Palestine but Kashmir should be our first priority and Iran has some brotherly obligations in this area.

A shah Feb 19, 2016 10:01pm

A bit late? No wonder India was their preferred partner.

A shah Feb 19, 2016 10:02pm

China is going to trade $600billion and we are now only lifting the sanctions?

DIL DIL PAKISTAN Feb 19, 2016 10:03pm

To expedite the work on gas pipe line at least

jag Feb 19, 2016 10:04pm

@M.Saeed I am not a N-League fan but give credit when its due. Not only the rates for Qatar LNG are better but the over head cost for gasification and re gasification will employ thousands of Pakistanis and most of the overhead money will stay in Pakistan.

Pragmatist Feb 19, 2016 10:12pm

Because of geographical proximity and sanctions relaxation Iran is going to be economic powerhouse of Middle East. Its logical for us to have good and brotherly relations with Iran.

Zain Feb 19, 2016 10:13pm

It would be much better if Pakistan was the first country to annouce this deceision ,Saddly its quiet late.

Mahmood Feb 19, 2016 10:21pm

If this is how lethargic Pakistani leadership is to the realities around them, and especially a rich neighbor, full of opportunities, than I would not shed any tears when bilateral trade between Iran and India worth Billions passes through Arabian Sea for all to lament!

Always late to the game. Rather then 'reacting' so slowly to changing dynamics,. Pakistan should've been pro-active even when talks were underway with the West to lift the sanctions, to prepare for bilateral trade opportunities, and other contracts.

That's what we get when we elect semi-literate paindoos to represent and manage the country's affairs.

Skeptic Feb 19, 2016 10:22pm

Oh yeah, I'm sure Iranians are thrilled that a super-power like Pakistan has finally lifted sanctions against them (just a month behind rest of the world).

Good times ahead for all Iranians!

Farooq Feb 19, 2016 10:32pm

Isn't it too late ?

Usman Feb 19, 2016 10:33pm

Today I got to knew we also impose sanctions.....:p

Zak Feb 19, 2016 10:47pm

Iran is a brotherly nation with many a common aspects of culture, language, religion and history. Iran has assisted pakistan in its conflicts with India and will always do so. The IP pipeline should be made a reality.

toori Feb 19, 2016 10:53pm

Pakistan can benefit from China, Russia, Iran and Saudia Arabia. We have take every opportunities with these countries. It is time to change our foreign policy

Desi Dimag Feb 19, 2016 10:56pm

Great relief for Iran.

gknatarajan Feb 19, 2016 11:01pm

HEADLINES looks funny, least to say!

Khalid Feb 19, 2016 11:15pm

Pakistan and Iran ties with Iran should be "greater than that of Saudi Arabia"

Vijay Feb 19, 2016 11:18pm

If Iran didn't care for the US or EU sanctions then why would it care about Pakistani sanctions?

ak Feb 19, 2016 11:19pm

@N_Saq Even Xi Jinping paid a long visit to Iran recently !!

Vijay Feb 19, 2016 11:21pm

@Bin Adam Saudis and Iranis joining hands is impossible.

FM Feb 19, 2016 11:27pm

why delay in liftinng sanctions? may be for ishaq dar and co to finalize the qatar LNG deal?

hussain Feb 19, 2016 11:32pm


akram Feb 19, 2016 11:44pm

@Abdullah The IP gas pipeline is already under construction. There are plans to also build oil and gas pipelines to China through Pakistan as part of CPEC. The game is already afoot.

ali khan Feb 20, 2016 12:08am

Pakistan has lifed sanctions??? can Pakistan impose sanctions against any country?

Sam Feb 20, 2016 12:17am


Iran already has a much better Auto Industry than Pakistan. They make their own cars, 100%, even under the sanctions. Pakistan is 50 years or more behind Iran in Auto industry. Search Irani Auto industry, their car company Iran Khodro, makes Samand, Dena, Soren, 100% in Iran. The French Renault and Peugeot helped them and now they make their own designs. Iran is much more industrialized than Pakistan. Even in Education sector Iran is far ahead of Pakistan. Iran has above 90% literacy rate. Their cities are much cleaner. I am Pakistan but I have to admit we have to do a lot of improvements in Pakistan if we ever want it to develop.

kamran Feb 20, 2016 12:22am

This Government is so slow, that it is of no use sometimes

solani Feb 20, 2016 12:51am

Keep open your mind never loose opportunity, it will be too late if China reach Iran.

Ahmed Haneef Feb 20, 2016 01:08am

I think Pakistan wasted this time in the hope of getting a better deal from Saudis, but Saudis are already in trouble on different external and internal fronts.

Farrukh Munir Feb 20, 2016 01:09am

Let's start with the gas pipeline as Iran has already completed their share of the pipeline!!

Shahid Feb 20, 2016 01:21am

Build the pipeline on our side without losing more time. And stop this joke of announcing of lifting the sanctions. These are not our sanctions, those who imposed them have already announced it more than a month ago.

Naseem Ahmad Feb 20, 2016 01:23am

@Abdullah they are getting much better plants in their country, which would be building the latest cars, not out dated models assembled in Pakistan.

Naseem Ahmad Feb 20, 2016 01:24am

@Khan143 Ha ha ha!!

sfomann Feb 20, 2016 01:43am

@Karachitee Agreed. And for that reason we should go all out and normalize relations with India. Feb 20, 2016 03:12am

Pakistan sanctions should remain in place because it's beneficial for iran

Islam shah Feb 20, 2016 03:45am

Funny headline. Sanctions were lifted by UN. Countries are just following, Pakistan never put sanctions in the first place

Another Indian Feb 20, 2016 03:53am

Why did Pakistan sanction Iran anyway?

Nadeem Feb 20, 2016 04:34am


Shan Feb 20, 2016 05:14am

Pakistan must not open trade with Iran. India is the main and upcoming economic power and Pakistan must see how it can benefit from Indian economy.

Khalid Feb 20, 2016 05:24am

late on catching train but still it will begin a journey.

Aa Feb 20, 2016 05:26am

What about the gas pipeline? Unlike qatar lng deal this is much better as we are not bound to buy gas from Iran...we can buy as and when required...whereas for lng we are tied with qatar for 15 years and must buy a certain amount each year

sukhera Feb 20, 2016 06:03am

The US and the European union has lifted the sanction on Iran on January 16, 2016 after it complied with the agreement. Why it a month for Pakistan to remove the sanctions against our neighbor and biggest trade partner . All the other countries have signed agreements with Iran to supply everything they needed. Why it took another month for Pakistan to remove sanctions. It appears Pakistani government is sleeping on the helm and does not want any disturbance in their sleep. Good Job Mr Dar you you are fast and efficient.

Abbas Naqvi Feb 20, 2016 11:08am

Pakistan-Iran trade volume stands at a dismally low level primarily because Pakistan does not lift Iranian oil. Iran offers special favors to countries buying Iranian crude such as China, South Korea and India. However, being a neighbor, Pakistan can certainly get its due share in the Iranian market by deploying effective commercial diplomacy. It is still not too late. By improving rail, road and Sea links and opening more border posts with Iran, Pakistan can boost its trade with the oil and gas rich country. Our private sector traders should visit Iran in the favorable post sanction climate to study the market and strike business deals with their Iranian counterparts now that the banking channels have been restored for formal trade. Our Commerce and Petroleum Ministeries should take the lead to push govt's efforts aimed at enhancing trade and implementing the mega IP gas pipeline project, strategic to Iran-Pakistan relations.

Sab Feb 20, 2016 11:12am

PMLN is a corrupt and inept government with zero vision. This is the reason it woke up so late to lift sanctions on Iran!

Iftikhar Husain Feb 20, 2016 05:38pm

It is a good news for both countries good luck.

Tipu Feb 20, 2016 06:14pm

oh thank u govt of pak by the way iranians don't mind us, we have already made our friends foes.

A. Mangal Feb 20, 2016 06:42pm

Wonder why Pakistan had upheld sanctions over Iran when UN's verdicts can't be followed through over Kasmir since 1950s of self determination? Why doesn't Pskistan leave the membership of this biased, useless, one sided body, represents only powerful, imperial institution and defunct club for nothing?

A. Mangal Feb 20, 2016 06:52pm

@N_Saq. Ishaq Dar is economist who has no education nor a formal training in international trade, finance or knowledge of macro economics yet being simply an accountant by profession, he considers borrowings as an asset not a liability for the treasury, and inflates national reserve! So, what would he know about doing trade with Iran over buying expensive gas from Qatar?

Khalid Feb 20, 2016 07:29pm

@N_Saq ....Iran needs "hi-tech infrastructure rebuilding requirements" Which currently only the West, Japan and China can offer ( in this order) and to a small extent India. Iran has been signing "multi- billion dollar contracts" to rebuild industry sector. Whilst Iran has signed contracts with Germany, France, Italy, China you will notice UK has been "left out" and that's for no obvious reason. Pakistan has "nothing to offer in terms of Iran's modernising requirements, but there is "other avenues" that Pakistan can and "will" progress with, and build up a "strong relationship"

zee Feb 20, 2016 11:27pm

@Coleman yeah but technically india is not an occupier like israel, india is not kicking out kashmiris out of kashmir and not allowing them to return.

ak4pk Feb 21, 2016 06:14am

No point in waking up Mr Dar, you've missed the boat. Might as well go back bed.

khanm Feb 21, 2016 07:22pm

Mr Ishaq Dar you have missed the boat once again. The countries who really enhanced their economies with Iran have already gained from their deals. China, India and European union have already cut deals with Iran worth trillions of dollars. Once again we are too late.

Kashmirisaffron Feb 22, 2016 05:42am

@Indian no he probably meant iran and Saudi Arabia. Pakistan is between 3 ancient civilizations. India to east. Persia to west. China to. North and in this case Arabian Sea to South linking to Oman. So i suggest u read about Pakistan region history. The myth that Pakistan is same as India has already been broken. Pakistan is healthy mix of the oldest civilizations of the world. Pakistan zindabad.

Faramarz Feb 22, 2016 10:22am

@Shah, Canada At least Iran is honest. You pay US and we'd take care of you. Not like the lying you know who. Zip it.