The Peninsula spoke with DC Partner Dan Waltz during an AmCham Qatar briefing on the impact of US-led economic sanctions against Iran on organizations involved in transactions related to the country, even if indirectly. Mr. Waltz addressed participants at the ‘Distinguished Speaker Series’ event in Doha, where he stressed the complex nature of these ‘secondary sanctions’ and their increasing focus on non-US companies. “The US sanctions targeting Iran have become extremely complicated, and have focused increasingly on non-US companies creating an environment which is difficult for these companies to navigate,” Mr. Waltz told the audience at the briefing. While claiming that in most instances unilateral sanctions tend to be ineffective, he pointed out that the United States has developed sufficient support among like-minded countries to create a multilateral regime which has been successful in its attempt to disrupt business among even those companies not involved in direct transactions with the country. Regarding the recently implemented interim agreement (reached in November) between the P5+1 and Iran, Mr. Waltz said: “Many believe that this might mark the opening of the Iranian market, but the sanctions relief it offers is actually quite limited.” “The US administration says that the negotiation for a permanent agreement (with Iran) would be much more challenging than the interim agreement,” he said. “So given the significant level of difficulties, there is a high risk of failing to reach an agreement,” he added.
Along with The Peninsula, Al Sharq, Doha Press, Gulf Times, QatarisBooming.com, Zawya, and PalFX carried news of the Doha presentation. In February, Mr. Waltz will speak during a series of events in the Middle East regarding the sanctions.