According to The Wall Street Journal, the sanctions will turn the financial screws on bank transactions: "The level of the threshold will depend on the sector, with humanitarian trade in food and medicines having a ceiling of 100,000 euros. But for many other items, any transaction over 10,000 euros with an Iranian bank will need preapproval."
For Mark Dubowitz, the executive director of the Washington- based Foundation for Defense of Democracies, there is a race against the Iranian nuclear weapons clock.
"Iranian nuclear physics is beating Western economic pressure as Iran advances its nuclear weapons capacity, while using its foreign exchange reserves and still sizable oil earnings to head off economic collapse," Dubowitz told the Post on Saturday via email. "Europe remains key if the West has any chance of ensuring that the economic cripple date occurs before the nuclear threshold date.
"The billions of euros in EU exports, particular the sophisticated machinery, industrial equipment and technology that Iran needs to run its economy, must be significantly and rapidly reduced," he said.
Dubowitz, a leading expert on international sanctions and Iran's economy, added, "If the latest EU measures force an import and balance of payments crisis that brings Iran's economy to the brink of collapse, we may soon have our answer to the question of whether severe economic pressure can break the regime's nuclear will. If EU sanctions, however, are riddled with loopholes in design and half-measures in implementation, the regime soon will be a threshold nuclear power, by which time it will be too late to peacefully resolve this crisis."
Tommy Steiner, a senior research fellow at the Institute for Policy and Strategy at the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya, told the Post on Saturday, "The new package of sanctions on Iran is yet another step in the right direction, but it is far from clear that sanctions alone will compel Iran to renounce its nuclear program. The time has come for the EU not only to match US sanctions but also American declaratory policy on Iran – that is to say, the EU should announce that it will not accept a nuclear Iran, and it will use all measures within its power to this end."