UANI Calls on Germany's Gottwald to End Business in Iran


April 24, 2013
Contact: Nathan Carleton, [email protected] 
Phone: (212) 554-3296

UANI Calls on Germany's Gottwald to End Business in Iran

New York, NY - Today, United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI) called on Germany's Gottwald Port Technology and its parent company Demag Cranes AG to end their business in Iran.

Gottwald is engaged in a range of services in Iran, including the sale of mobile harbour cranes and other cranes used in ports and terminals. Iran's ports and sea-based trade are controlled by the regime and closely connected to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).

In a letter to Demag CEO Aloysius Rauen, UANI CEO, Ambassador Mark D. Wallace, wrote:

            ... Gottwald's insistence on allegedly maintaining business activities in Iran via the provision of a range of its services, in particular the sale of mobile harbour - and other cranes used in ports and terminals, raises a number of serious questions. As you may be aware, providing these types of services could pose the risk of them being misused by sanctioned Iranian entities. Recent EU & U.S. sanctions are intended to starve the regime of any means that could be used in support of its nuclear dossier.We would thus invite you to consider whether Gottwald's alleged continued business may be in violation of the spirit of EU sanctions. UANI therefore calls on Gottwald to abandon its business in Iran in order to avoid any reputational damage deriving from its business activities there. ...

According to your website, Gottwald is servicing Iran through its sales office in Abu Dhabi. On its website, Gottwald offers a variety of cranes, including portal harbor, mobile, and floating cranes, connected to ports and the naval industry. Given the importance of sea-based trade to the Iranian economy and in particular Iran's oil trade - a major source of income to the Iranian regime - Gottwald products may be supporting trade in violation of the spirit of EU sanctions. Furthermore, ports and sea-based trade are closely connected to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps ("IRGC"), an elite branch of Iran's military and Gottwald may thus be inadvertently cooperating with an entity sanctioned by the EU and U.S. Given these circumstances, we would like to ask you to clarify what internal precautions Gottwald has undertaken to ensure that its business activities do not inadvertently violate EU sanctions regulations. ...

Gottwald should be aware of U.S. legislation that could directly impact its ability to work with the US government and access the U.S. financial system. Section 301 of the Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act of 2012 ("ITRA") sanctions any person involved in "a transaction to facilitate the manufacture, importation, exportation, or transfer of items needed for the development by Iran of nuclear, chemical, biological, or advanced conventional weapons, including ballistic missiles". We invite Gottwald to consider whether its activity in Iran is compliant with this U.S. legislation. Furthermore, Section 302 of ITRA imposes sanctions against any person that "materially assist[s], sponsor[s], or provide[s] financial, material, or technological support for, or goods or services in support of, Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps or any of its officials, agents, or affiliates..." Given the Revolutionary Guard's ubiquitous presence in the Iranian economy, it may be likely that Gottwald is doing business with this sanctioned entity. ...

UANI's Germany Campaign highlights the extensive Iran business activities of German businesses, firms and entities. German businesses are bolstering the Iranian economy and expanding Iranian industrial capacity at a time when the international community is working to economically isolate the Iranian regime.

UANI's Cranes Campaign highlights the Iranian regime's record of conducting public executions by crane. Since the campaign was launched in 2011, prominent crane manufacturers Palfinger, Terex, Liebherr, Tadano, Konecranes, and UNIC have ended their business in Iran.

Click here to read UANI's full letter to Gottwald.
Click here to learn more about UANI's Germany Campaign.
Click here to learn more about UANI's Cranes Campaign.
Click here to learn more about UANI's Shipping Campaign.