Central bank says there is no regulation banning Armenian banks from servicing Iranian citizens

21.11.2018 18:45
Central bank says there is no regulation banning Armenian banks from servicing Iranian citizens

YEREVAN, November 21. /ARKA/. In response to media reports that Armenia-based commercial banks are closing the dollar accounts of customers born in Iran, despite their Armenian citizenship, to meet a request of the Central Bank, stemming in turn from US sanctions against Iran, the Armenian Central Bank said there is no regulation or legal act that would prohibit the local banks from servicing the citizens of Iran or other persons from that country.

The Central Bank said it closely cooperates with international financial structures, such as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, and is also a member of the EUROPEAN MONEYVAL group. It said also that according to the law, Armenian banks are obliged to assess clients' risks and classify customers in terms of risk through an additional in-depth analysis.

The Central Bank said that banks, given the restrictions applied by their partners and correspondent foreign banks in relation to a certain group of clients and / or transactions, will probably refrain from servicing such clients, which may include, among others, Iranian citizens or individuals from that country. Moreover, this approach is not new, and was applied in the past as well. The regulator said the reports pursues the private goals of a certain group or groups.

On Nov. 5, Washington reimposed sanctions on Tehran, targeting the country's banks, airline, shipping firms and atomic energy agency, which had been lifted in 2016. The Iranian Mellat Bank, affected by the sanctions, has a branch in Armenia. -0-


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