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President Trump’s Cuba Policy Changes Have Limited Practical Impact – For Now

President Trump announced just before the weekend that he will reinstate certain travel and commercial restrictions related to Cuba that had been eased under the Obama Administration. While President Trump declared that he...more

Following CFIUS Recommendation, President Obama Blocks Chinese Acquisition of US-German Semiconductor Equipment Manufacturer

President Obama issued an executive order on December 2, 2016 blocking the sale of the U.S. business of Aixtron SE (“Aixtron”), a German semiconductor manufacturer, to a German subsidiary of a Chinese fund, Fujian Grand Chip...more

Anti-bribery compliance in India: Both sword and shield

In recent years, both the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) have stepped up their enforcement of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), including to address...more

FCPA Enforcement Action Highlights Risks for the Financial Services Industry and Individual Executives

New York-based hedge fund Och-Ziff Capital Management Group (the “Hedge Fund”) agreed to pay approximately $412 million to resolve charges brought by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) and Department of...more

District Court Upholds Indictment of Turkish/Iranian Billionaire Charged with Evading US Economic Sanctions against Iran

U.S. District Court Judge Richard M. Berman denied a motion to dismiss the indictment in the closely followed criminal prosecution of Reza Zarrab, a Turkish/Iranian businessman charged with conspiring to evade U.S. economic...more

U.S. Government Issues Guidance to Reassure U.S. Banks Involved in Foreign Correspondent Relationships

The U.S. Department of the Treasury, together with other U.S. government agencies responsible for enforcing anti-money laundering (AML) and economic sanctions regulations, released guidance on August 30, 2016 in the form of a...more

United States Further Eases Economic Sanctions on Burma/Myanmar

The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) eased certain sanctions against Burma/Myanmar on May 17, 2016, including by allowing most transactions involving Burmese financial institutions....more

Foreign Financial Institutions Beware: United States Expands Economic Sanctions Against Hizballah

Effective April 16, 2016, the United States will implement sanctions pursuant to the Hizballah International Financing Prevention Act of 2015. The new sanctions target Hizballah (or Hezbollah) and non-U.S. persons who support...more

US Commerce and Treasury Departments Further Ease Restrictions Against Cuba

The U.S. Commerce and Treasury Departments announced on January 26, 2016, actions to ease certain restrictions on transactions involving Cuba. The new actions do not significantly expand the types of activities in which U.S....more

Iran Sanctions: What is Prohibited or Licensable for EU Businesses?

Despite the easing of sanctions on Iran on 16 January under the Joint Comprehensive Programme of Action (JCPOA), some prohibitions and licensing requirements continue to apply to EU businesses. These are summarised below,...more

Implementation Day: Iran Sanctions Eased Today

On Saturday, 16 January 2016, the International Atomic Energy Association (IAEA) submitted a report to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) certifying that Iran has satisfied its obligations under the Joint...more

Iran Sanctions: Early Easing of Sanctions Increasingly Possible

Public officials from the United States increasingly are making public statements regarding the likelihood that “Implementation Day” – the day on which many US and EU sanctions against Iran will be eased – will arrive in the...more

Adoption Day in Iran Sanctions Deal: US and EU Give Clarification, But No Lifting of Sanctions Yet

The United States and European Union took preparatory steps on 18 October 2015 to begin fulfilling their commitments to suspend certain sanctions against Iran pursuant to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (“JCPOA”)...more

U.S. Government Takes Steps to Further Ease Restrictions on Cuba

U.S. Commerce and Treasury Department measures intended to further ease existing export and sanctions restrictions regarding Cuba took effect on September 21, 2015. These amendments to the Cuban Assets Control Regulations...more

Iran Deal “Clears” Congress, But No Sanctions Relief Yet

On September 10, 2015, Senate Democrats in the U.S. Congress blocked a vote on a widely anticipated resolution to reject the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (“JCPOA”) regarding Iran’s nuclear program. On September 11, the...more

US Imposes Significant Export Restrictions on Russian Oil and Gas Field

The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (“BIS”) added the Yuzhno-Kirinskoye Field, a Russian oil and gas field, to the Entity List on August 7, 2015. The action effectively prohibits all persons from...more

Nuclear Agreement with Iran Announced: Significant Easing of Iran Sanctions in Sight, but Only Outside of the United States

Iran and the P5+1 countries (United States, Russia, China, United Kingdom, France and Germany) on 14 July 2015 announced their agreement on a comprehensive plan under which certain international sanctions against Iran will be...more

FLIR FCPA Action Highlights: Continued Focus on Penalizing Improper Expenditures for Government Officials

FLIR Systems, Inc. (“FLIR”), a publicly traded company based in Oregon, agreed to pay approximately $9.5 million to settle allegations of violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”) on April 8, 2015. The U.S....more

U.S. Government Announces Significant Sanctions Enforcement Actions Against Schlumberger and PayPal

The U.S. Government announced two major sanctions enforcement actions this week that reinforce the compliance challenges faced by both U.S. companies with international activities and non-U.S. companies subject to U.S....more

CFIUS Releases Annual Report to Congress

The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) was established decades ago to identify and recommend responses to threats to US national security posed by acquisitions by non-US entities of controlling...more

US and Cuba Seek to Normalize Relations; US to Ease Certain Restrictions

President Obama announced on December 17, 2014 that the United States and Cuba will open talks seeking to restore full diplomatic relations, and that the United States will be taking a number of steps to ease restrictions in...more

12/18/2014  /  Barack Obama , Cuba , Foreign Relations

New Law Significantly Expands Legal Basis for US Sanctions Against Russia

On 16 December 2014, President Obama announced that he will sign the Ukraine Freedom Support Act of 2014 (hereinafter the “Act”) into law. As discussed in our update dated 12 December 2014, the Act represents a potentially...more

US Clarifies Sanctions Provisions and US Senate Passes a Bill to Codify and Expand Sanctions

As noted in previous updates, the United States and European Union continue to impose sanctions against Ukrainian and Russian individuals and entities as a result of the turmoil in Ukraine. On 11 December 2014, the US Senate...more

Temporary Suspension of Certain Sanctions Against Iran Extended Until Mid-2015

On November 24, 2014, the United States, the United Kingdom, France, China, Russia and Germany (collectively, the “P5+1”) announced that they will continue current negotiations with Iran regarding its nuclear program and will...more

11/26/2014  /  Extensions , Iran Sanctions , JPOA , P5+1 Nations

New OFAC Guidance on 50% Rule Expands Reach of US Sanctions

The U.S. Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”) revised its guidance with respect to entities owned 50 percent or more in the aggregate by more than one blocked persons. The new guidance, issued on...more

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