President Trump’s trade sanctions could have far reaching on European nations too, as Greece ‘s shipping industry is going to face a tough time due to its sanctions on Iran’s oil exports. Recently US has again reinstated the global ban on oil exports of Iran that will hit Greek’s shipping industry the hardest as it owns world’s biggest merchant shipping fleet and a large part of its business is devoted to transporting Iranian oil. Before the ban was reintroduced Greek ships transported 37 percent of Iran’s crude oil during the early part of this year, while the other part was managed by Iran’s own shipping line.
Greek has been given an extension like other nations that trade with Greece, including China, Taiwan, Italy, India, Japan, Turkey and South Korea for 180 days to reduce their dependence on Iran’s oil orders and start looking for others. Other nations have been told to stop trading with Iran immediately or face retaliatory trade measures from the United States. This means that after the grace period is over Greece’s oil tankers will face a substantial drop in their business and its other shipping firms have no choice but to comply with the ban as US is targeting even individual firms that have business relations with Iran.
If these Greek shipping firms do not toe the line they could be banned from US ports and as many of them are listed on the US stock markets cannot take risks. Experts say that these ships can diversify into other markets in the Middle East like Saudi Arabia that will now be under pressure to increase its oil output to meet demand. Though some Greek shipping firms that do not have any links with the United States may not comply with the ban but none are prepared to defy America openly. The Greek shipping industry employs more than 200000 people and has remained afloat even when other parts of the economy were in debt crisis till recently.