UANI Calls on French Shipping Giant CMA CGM to End Its Business in Iran

NEW YORK--()--United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI) on Wednesday called on the CMA CGM Group (“CMA CGM”) to follow the lead of other responsible corporations and cease all business activities in or with Iran. CMA CGM, a privately owned French company and the third largest shipping container company worldwide, is listed on UANI’s Iran Business Registry (IBR).

While the world is increasingly taking steps to isolate Iran for its pursuit of an illegal nuclear weapons program, CMA CGM is instead increasing its business in Iran, stating that it would increase activities in the port of Bushehr, where Iran’s light water nuclear reactor is located, “10 times more than present.”

Since 2009, CMA CGM vessels have also been involved in two known incidents of shipping dangerous weaponry to or from Iran in violation of UN Security Council Resolutions. Most recently, in October 2010, Nigerian authorities seized 13 shipping containers carrying illegal Iranian weaponry at Lagos’ Apapa Port.

In the second case, in July 2009 the UAE seized a shipment of weapons from North Korea destined for Iran. This case is particularly troubling, because according to a diplomatic source, the shipment reportedly contained components that would be used for an Iranian test launch of a new, North Korean-supplied intermediate-range ballistic missile. The missile, reportedly the BM-25 (or Musudan), is capable of carrying a nuclear warhead and reaching targets in Western Europe. CMA CGM’s business in Iran is clearly helping to prop up the Iranian regime’s dictatorship.

In a letter to Jacques R. Saadé, the Group Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the CMA CGM Group, and Frank J. Baragona, President of CMA CGM (America) LLC, UANI President, Ambassador Mark D. Wallace wrote:

CMA CGM’s office in the United States is clearly subject to the jurisdiction of U.S. law enforcement authorities and the subpoena power of the U.S. Congress. UANI calls on the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia to investigate CMA CGM and, particularly, its role in Iran business and the startling reports that CMA CGM was responsible for shipping ballistic missile parts from North Korea to Iran including BM-25 missile components. It is simply untenable for a company to be located within ten miles from the U.S. Department of Justice in Norfolk, VA and to be able to ship ballistic missile parts by and between North Korea and Iran without fear of criminal investigation and potential sanction.

CMA CGM’s office in the U.S. should be obligated to provide:

1. Detailed information of all cargo shipments by and between Iran and North Korea;

2. Detailed manifest information on the shipments seized by the Nigerian and UAE authorities described above;

3. Any and all information related to arms, munitions and/or missile technology shipped by CMA CGM to or from an Iranian port over the last seven (7) years;

4. Any and all agreements with IRGC controlled and/or affiliated entities, and;

5. All documents regarding the nature and extent of CMA CGM’s business in Iran.

UANI also urges the U.S. House Committee on Foreign Affairs and the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, in their consideration of additional Iranian sanctions, to subpoena CMA CGM to testify on the above described matters.

Click here to send a message to CMA CGM.
Click here to read the letter to CMA CGM.
Click here to learn more about the Iran Disclosure Project.


United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI)
Kimmie Lipscomb, 212-554-3296

Release Summary

UANI calls on French shipping giant CMA CGM to cease its business in or with Iran. Since 2009, CMA CGM has been involved in two known incidents of shipping dangerous weaponry to or from Iran.


United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI)
Kimmie Lipscomb, 212-554-3296