UBS has a Group Sanctions Policy that prohibits transactions involving sanctioned countries, including Iran, and sanctioned individuals and entities. However, UBS maintains one account involving the Iranian government under the auspices of the United Nations in Geneva after agreeing with the Swiss government that it would do so only under certain conditions. These conditions include that payments involving the account must: (1) be made within Switzerland; (2) be consistent with paying rent, salaries, telephone and other expenses necessary for its operations in Geneva; and (3) not involve any Specially Designated Nationals (SDNs) blocked or otherwise restricted under U.S. or Swiss law. In 2017, the gross revenues for this UN-related account were approximately USD 15,580. We do not allocate expenses to specific client accounts in a way that enables us to calculate net profits with respect to any individual account. UBS AG intends to continue maintaining this account pursuant to the conditions it has established with the Swiss Government and consistent with its Group Sanctions Policy. UBS also maintains a rental surety (effectively a rental security deposit) account in relation to the Government of Iran's UN Mission premises in Geneva; there were no revenues for this account.
"When it comes to U.S. sanctions on Iran, no detail is too small to overlook these days. Since February, publicly traded companies have filed nearly 500 disclosure forms about their business ties to Iran…On Nov. 8, banking giant UBS said it had arranged trade financing for Swiss exporters involving four Iranian banks allegedly taking part in deals related to weapons of mass destruction. The bank said in its public filing that there had been no transactions since February 2012 but that it still maintained 'one existing account relationship' with one of the Iranian banks." (Washington Post, "Under new law, companies disclosing even tiniest dealings with Iran," 12/4/13)
"In 2004 UBS, a Swiss bank, paid a $100m fine (without admitting any liability) for providing new banknotes to Cuba and Iran." (The Economist. "Patchy blockade; Cuba and the United States," 8/16/08)
"US victims of attacks in Israel and their families are suing Swiss bank UBS for 500 million dollars, alleging it financed terrorism by doing business with Iran, their lawyer told AFP Tuesday." (AFP. "US families sue UBS over alleged terror links," 5/13/08)
"In late 2005, Dutch bank ABN Amro agreed to pay $80 million in fines stemming in part from improper transactions with Iran through its subsidiary in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. UBS Bank and Credit Suisse of Switzerland recently announced they were suspending most new business with Iran, and British-based HSBC said it would no longer accept dollar transactions from within Iran." (Los Angeles Times, "U.S. Puts The Squeeze On Iran's Oil Fields," January 7, 2007) "Since January three European banks - UBS, Credit Suisse and ABN Amro - have curtailed their activities in Iran. The banks said that their decisions to cut back had been business ones." (The London Times, "American pressure threatens UK firms," May 27, 2006)
UBS will no longer deal with individuals, companies or state institutions such as Iran's central bank, said company spokesman Serge Steiner. A similar policy is also being implemented in the case of Syria, he said.
All existing business with customers in Iran will be canceled, but Iranians in exile are not affected by the decision, Steiner said, confirming an article in Swiss weekly SonntagsZeitung.
"It is a carefully prepared measure that has been under consideration since last fall," Steiner said.
Iran, under increasing international pressure over its nuclear program — and mindful of the freezing of its U.S. assets after the 1979 seizure of the American Embassy in Tehran — has already begun transferring its reserves from European banks to an undisclosed location.
Steiner declined to specify the volume of business affected by the bank's decision. (Fox News. "UBS Halts Business with Iran," 1/22/06)
No response at this time.