Iran

UN and autonomous sanctions

Australia fully implements the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) sanctions regime in relation to Iran.

The UNSC adopted Resolution 2231 (2015) on 20 July 2015, which, once the International Atomic Energy Agency declared that Iran had reformed its nuclear program, endorsed the Joint Comprehensive Program of Action (JCPOA) and terminated sanctions imposed under UNSC resolutions 1696 (2006), 1737 (2006), 1747 (2007), 1803 (2008) and 1929 (2010).

UNSC Resolution 2231 emphasises that the JCPOA is conducive to 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.

The resolution also calls upon all Member States, regional organisations and international organisations to take such actions as may be appropriate to support the implementation of the JCPOA, including by taking actions commensurate with the implementation plan set out in the JCPOA and Resolution 2231 and by refraining from actions that undermine implementation of commitments under the JCPOA.

Even though UNSC resolution 2331 (2015) terminated previous UNSC sanctions, it also imposed measures that restrict certain activities.

Australia also implements an autonomous sanctions regime in relation to Iran, which complements UN Security Council sanctions.

This page summarises the current sanctions measures imposed by the sanctions regimes implemented by Australia in relation to Iran.

This page also includes information on de-listing requests from a designated person or entity and useful links.

Restrictions on the export or supply of goods

UNSC sanctions regime

In accordance with the UNSC sanctions regime, Australian law prohibits the direct or indirect supply, sale or transfer to Iran of the following ‘export sanctioned goods’:

  • all goods set out in INFCIRC/254/Part 1;
  • all goods set out in INFCIRC/254/Part 2;
  • all goods set out in S/2015/546;
  • items that the Minister for Foreign Affairs has determined could, if supplied to Iran, contribute to reprocessing or enrichment-related or heavy water-related activities inconsistent with the JCPOA; or  the development of nuclear weapon delivery systems – see Charter of the United Nations (Sanctions – Iran) (Export Sanctioned Goods) List Determination 2016;
  • battle tanks, armoured combat vehicles, large calibre artillery systems, combat aircraft, attack helicopters, warships, missiles or missile systems as defined for the purpose of the United Nations Register of Conventional Arms, or related matériel, including spare parts

without a sanctions permit.

Conditions for the grant of a sanctions permit

The Minister for Foreign Affairs may grant a sanctions permit authorising the supply, sale or transfer of ‘export sanctioned goods’ if:

  • the goods are ‘permissible goods’ and all of the following apply:
    • the requirements of the guidelines in INFCIRC/254/Part 1 or INFCIRC/254/Part 2, as appropriate, have been met;
    • Australia has obtained a right to verify the end-use and end-use location for any goods that are supplied; and
    • Australia is in a position to exercise that right effectively; or
  • all of the following apply:
  • the goods are listed in  the Charter of the United Nations (Sanctions – Iran) (Export Sanctioned Goods) List Determination 2016 and the Minister has determined that the supply is not a supply that could contribute to reprocessing or enrichment-related or heavy water-related activities inconsistent with the JCPOA, or to the development of nuclear weapons delivery systems; or
  • all of the following apply:
    • the goods are set out in S/2015/546 or the Minister has determined that the goods could, if supplied to Iran, contribute to the development of nuclear weapon delivery systems – see the Charter of the United Nations (Sanctions – Iran) (Export Sanctioned Goods) List Determination 2016;
    • the supply of the goods has been approved in advance by the Security Council;
    • the contract for delivery of the goods includes appropriate end-user guarantees;
    • the Minister has obtained a commitment from the Government of Iran not to use the goods for the development of nuclear weapon delivery systems; or
  • the goods are battle tanks, armoured combat vehicles, large calibre artillery systems, combat aircraft, attack helicopters, warships, missiles or missile systems as defined for the purpose of the United Nations Register of Conventional Arms and the supply has been approved in advance by the Security Council.

You may apply for a sanctions permit using the Online Sanctions Administration System. If approval from the UN Security Council is required, DFAT will seek that approval after you have applied for the sanctions permit and if the Minister for Foreign Affairs agrees that the approval should be sought.

Implementing legislation

Australian autonomous sanctions regime

Australia’s autonomous sanctions law also prohibits the direct or indirect supply, sale or transfer to Iran, for use in Iran, or for the benefit of Iran, of the following ‘export sanctioned goods’ for Iran:

without a sanctions permit.

Conditions for the grant of a sanctions permit

The Minister for Foreign Affairs may grant a sanctions permit authorising an activity that would otherwise contravene these prohibitions if satisfied that it would be in the national interest to do so.

If you assess that your activity satisfies this condition, you may apply for a sanctions permit using the Online Sanctions Administration System (OSAS).

Implementing legislation

Restrictions on the export or provision of services

UNSC sanctions regime

In accordance with the UN Security Council sanctions regime, Australian law prohibits:

  • the provision to Iran of technical assistance or training, financial assistance, or investment, brokering or other financial services related to the supply, sale, transfer, manufacture or use of ‘export sanctioned goods’;
  • the transfer of financial resources or financial services related to the supply, sale, transfer, manufacture or use of export sanctioned goods for the benefit of Iran; and
  • the provision to Iran of any technology related to the supply, sale, transfer, manufacture or use of export sanctioned goods set out in S/2015/546 or goods that the Minister has determined could, if supplied to Iran, contribute to the development of nuclear weapon delivery systems – see the Charter of the United Nations (Sanctions – Iran) (Export Sanctioned Goods) List Determination 2016

without a sanctions permit.

Conditions for the grant of a sanctions permit

The Minister for Foreign Affairs may grant a sanctions permit authorising the provision of a ‘sanctioned service’ if:

  • the services relates to goods that are ‘permissible goods’; or
  • the services relates to goods listed in the Charter of the United Nations (Sanctions – Iran) (Export Sanctioned Goods) List Determination 2016 and the Minister for Foreign Affairs has determined that the service is not a service that could contribute to:
    • reprocessing or enrichment-related or heavy-water activities inconsistent with the JCPOA; or
    • the development of nuclear weapons delivery systems; or
  • the provision of the service has been approved in advance by the UN Security Council and,
    • if the service is provided in relation to goods set out in S/2015/546, or

that the contract for delivery of the service includes appropriate end-user guarantees.

You may apply for a sanctions permit using the Online Sanctions Administration System. If approval from the UN Security Council is required, DFAT will seek that approval after you have applied for the sanctions permit and if the Minister for Foreign Affairs agrees that the approval should be sought.

The Minister for Foreign Affairs must not grant a permit unless satisfied that the requirements of the guidelines in INFCIRC/254/Part 1 or INFCIRC/254/Part 2, as appropriate, have been met in relation to the sanctioned services.

Implementing legislation

Australian autonomous sanctions regime

Australia’s autonomous sanctions law also prohibits the provision to any person of:

  • technical advice, assistance or training;
  • financial assistance;
  • a financial service; or
  • another service

    if it assists with, or is provided in relation to: the supply, sale or transfer of an ‘export sanctioned good’ to Iran; or to the manufacture, maintenance or use of an ‘export sanctioned good’ for Iran; and
  • financial assistance; or
  • a financial service

    if it assists with, or is provided, in relation to, a ‘sanctioned import’; or
  • an investment service

    if it assists with, or is provided in relation to, a sanctioned commercial activity

without a sanctions permit.

Conditions for the grant of a sanctions permit

The Minister for Foreign Affairs may grant a sanctions permit authorising an activity that would otherwise contravene these prohibitions if the Minister is satisfied that it would be in the national interest to do so.

If you assess that your activity satisfies this condition, you may apply for a sanctions permit using the Online Sanctions Administration System (OSAS).

Implementing legislation  

Restrictions on the import, procurement, purchase or transport of goods

UNSC sanctions regime

In accordance with the UN Security Council sanctions regime, Australian law prohibits the procurement from Iran, or from a person or entity in Iran, of the following ‘import sanctioned goods’:

without a sanctions permit.

Conditions for the grant of a sanctions permit

You may apply for a sanctions permit using the Online Sanctions Administration System. The Minister for Foreign Affairs may, on application and with approval of the Security Council, grant a permit authorising the procurement of import sanctioned goods. If approval from the UN Security Council is required, DFAT will seek that approval after you have applied for the sanctions permit and if the Minister for Foreign Affairs agrees that the approval should be sought.

Implementing legislation

Restrictions on commercial activities

UNSC sanctions regime

In accordance with the UN Security Council sanctions regime, Australian law prohibits:

  • the sale or otherwise making available of an interest in a ‘sensitive commercial activity’ to
    • Iran; or
    • an Iranian national; or
    • an entity incorporated in Iran or subject to Iranian jurisdiction; or
    • a person or entity acting on behalf of, or at the discretion of, Iran, an Iranian national, or an entity incorporated in Iran or subject to Iranian jurisdiction; or
    • an entity owned or controlled by Iran, an Iranian national, or an entity incorporated in Iran or subject to Iranian jurisdiction.

A ‘sensitive commercial activity’ means a commercial activity:

  • involving uranium mining; or
  • involving uranium production; or
  • involving the use of nuclear materials or technology listed in INFCIRC/254/Part 1; or
  • related to the supply, sale, transfer, manufacture or use of export sanctioned goods set out in S/2015/546 or goods that the Minister has determined could, if supplied to Iran, contribute to the development of nuclear weapon delivery systems – see the Charter of the United Nations (Sanctions – Iran) (Export Sanctioned Goods) List Determination 2016; or
  • related to any activity undertaken by Iran related to ballistic missiles designed to be capable of delivering nuclear weapons, including launches using such ballistic missile technology.

Conditions for the grant of a sanctions permit

You may apply for a sanctions permit using the Online Sanctions Administration System. The Minister for Foreign Affairs may, on application and with approval of the Security Council, grant a permit authorising the sale or making available of an interest in a sensitive commercial activity. If approval from the UN Security Council is required, DFAT will seek that approval after you have applied for the sanctions permit and if the Minister for Foreign Affairs agrees that the approval should be sought.

Implementing legislation

Targeted financial sanctions

UNSC sanctions regime

In accordance with the UN Security Council sanctions regime, Australian law prohibits:

  • the use of or dealing with an asset that is owned or controlled by a ‘designated person or entity’ for Iran, or a person or entity acting on behalf of or at the direction of a designated person or entity, or an entity owned or controlled by a designated person or entity, including through illicit means; and
  • making an asset available, directly or indirectly, to or for the benefit of
    • a ‘designated person or entity’ for Iran; or
    • a person or entity acting on behalf of or at the direction of a ‘designated person or entity’ for Iran; or
    • an entity owned or controlled by a ‘designated person or entity’ for Iran

without a sanctions permit.

An ‘asset’ is defined broadly in section 2 of the Charter of the United Nations Act 1945 to include an asset or property of any kind, whether tangible or intangible, movable or immovable, and however acquired.

The Consolidated List includes the names of all designated persons and entities under Australian sanctions laws.

Conditions for the grant of a sanctions permit

The Minister for Foreign Affairs may grant a sanctions permit authorising an activity that would otherwise contravene these prohibitions if the activity is:

  • the making available of an asset or the use of, or dealing with, the asset so far as the availability, use or dealing is necessary for:
    • civil nuclear cooperation projects described in Annex III of the JCPOA; or
    • activities directly related to the items specified in paragraph 2 of Annex B to the JCPOA, or to any other activity required for the implementation of the JCPOA; or
  • a ‘basic expense dealing’;
  • a ‘legally required dealing’; or
  • a ‘contractual dealing’; or
  • a ‘required payment dealing’; or
  • an ‘extraordinary expense dealing’

as those terms are defined in regulation 5 of the Charter of the United Nations (Dealing with Assets) Regulations 2008.

You may apply for a sanctions permit using the Online Sanctions Administration System. If approval from the UN Security Council is required, DFAT will seek that approval after you have applied for the sanctions permit and if the Minister for Foreign Affairs agrees that the approval should be sought.

 Implementing legislation

Australian autonomous sanctions regime

Australia’s autonomous sanctions law also prohibits:

  • the use of or dealing with an asset that is owned or controlled by a ‘designated person or entity’ for Iran; and
  • making an asset available directly or indirectly to, or for the benefit of, a ‘designated person or entity’ for the Iran

without a sanctions permit.

An ‘asset’ is defined broadly in section 2 of the Charter of the United Nations Act 1945  to include an asset or property of any kind, whether tangible or intangible, movable or immovable, however acquired.

The Consolidated List includes the names of all designated persons and entities under Australian sanctions laws.

Conditions for the grant of a sanctions permit

The Minister for Foreign Affairs may grant a sanctions permit authorising an activity that would otherwise contravene these prohibitions if:

  • the Minister is satisfied that it would be in the national interest to do so; and
  • the application for the sanctions permit is for ‘a basic expense dealing’, a ‘legally required dealing’, or a ‘contractual dealing’ as those terms are defined in regulation 20 of the Autonomous Sanctions Regulations 2011.

If you assess that your activity satisfies these conditions, you may apply for a sanctions permit using the Online Sanctions Administration System (OSAS).

Implementing legislation

Travel bans

UNSC sanctions regime

In accordance with the UN Security Council sanctions regime, Australian law prohibits the entry into or transit through Australia of a ‘designated person’ for Iran without authorisation by the UNSC.

The Consolidated List includes the names of all designated persons under Australian sanctions laws.

Conditions for the waiver of a travel ban

The Minister for Foreign Affairs may waive this prohibition only if the Minister is satisfied that:

  • the applicant is not a UNSC-designated person; or
  • a UNSC committee has determined that the applicant’s travel to or transit through Australia is justified; or
  • a UNSC committee has authorised the applicant’s travel to or transit through Australia; or
  • the grant of the visa to the applicant is justified by compelling circumstances, which may include the fulfilling of an international obligation owed by Australia.

Implementing legislation

Australian autonomous sanctions regime

Australia’s autonomous sanctions law also prohibits a ‘declared person’ from travelling to, entering or remaining in Australia unless the Minister for Foreign Affairs waives this prohibition.

The Consolidated List includes the names of all declared persons under Australian sanctions laws.

Conditions for the waiver of a travel ban

The Minister for Foreign Affairs may waive this prohibition only:

  • on the grounds that it would be in the national interest; or
  • on humanitarian grounds.

Implementing legislation

De-listing requests from a designated person or entity

UNSC sanctions regime

A person or entity designated for the purposes of the UNSC sanctions regime in relation to Iran may submit a de-listing request either through the focal point for de-listing established by UNSC Resolution 1730 (2006), or through the person or entity’s country of citizenship or residence. 

Australian autonomous sanctions regime

A person or entity designated or declared for the purposes of the Australian autonomous sanctions regime in relation to Iran may submit a de-listing request to the Minister for Foreign Affairs under regulation 11 of Autonomous Sanctions Regulations 2011.

Other useful links


Last Updated: 9 March 2016