Iran is already looking East – considering its top Asian energy clients and the close ties with the Belt and Road Initiative and the EAEU. Team Rouhani now knows, in realpolitik terms, they cannot trust the US; and the EU is an immensely problematic partner.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo previously warned of “swift punishment” for countries doing business with Iran, thus INSTEX is seen as a first small step toward greater European economic independence.
In a move sure to unleash fury from the Trump administration, the European Union has announced it has set up a transactions channel with Iran to bypass U.S. sanctions. The launch of INSTEX — or "Instrument in Support of Trade Exchanges" — by France, Germany, and the UK will allow non-dollar trade with Iran and is being described as facilitating