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News: US OFAC issues further Advisory in respect of Iran sanctions

19 September 2019

On 4 September 2019, the US Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) issued an 'Advisory to the Maritime Petroleum Shipping Community' to alert persons globally to the significant sanctions risks related to shipping petroleum or petroleum products from Iran. A copy of the Advisory can be found in the attachment on the right.

The Advisory notes that these shipments 'create significant sanctions risk' for entities and individuals in the shipping industry, including shipping companies, vessel owners, managers, operators, insurers and financial institutions.  It warns that persons providing bunkering services to vessels transporting petroleum or petroleum products from Iran risk being subject to sanctions themselves (unless an applicable waiver or exception applies).

It confirms that OFAC continues to focus on international shipping as a means to implement US sanctions against Iran and that it has now turned its attention to the bunkering of vessels engaged in Iranian trade or involving Iranian vessels.

The Advisory also warns against deceptive shipping practices and provides guidance on risk mitigation measures which should be considered by the shipping industry to ensure sanctions compliance. Further details are provided in the client alert attached on the right issued by US law firm Freehill, Hogan & Mahar LLP.