SIEMENS Boycotts Israel? Germany seems fine, but not the State of Illinois (Developing Story)

According to research by the German public broadcast ‘SWR‘, SIEMENS formed a Turkish a subsidiary – Siemens AŞ – which won in 2018 the tender from the Turkish state railway TCDD. The SIEMENS subsidiary signed a contract for the delivery of ten high-speed trains in April 2018. The said order volume: 341 million Euros.

In order to get the tender, the Turkish subsidiary of SIEMENS signed to boycott Israel, which on the first glance contradicts German laws. The declaration to boycott Israel by the Turkish SIEMENS subsidiary was a prerequisite, since the project was co-financed by the ‘Saudi Arabian Islamic Development Bank’ (IDB). One of their terms of business is that you do not business with Israel.

But, this contradicts German law: §7 of ‘Außenwirtschaftsverordnung (AWV)’ says: “Die Abgabe einer Erklärung im Außenwirtschaftsverkehr, durch die sich ein Inländer an einem Boykott gegen einen anderen Staat beteiligt (Boykott-Erklärung), ist verboten. Satz 1 gilt nicht für eine Erklärung, die abgegeben wird, um den Anforderungen einer wirtschaftlichen Sanktionsmaßnahme eines Staates gegen einen anderen Staat zu genügen, gegen den auch 1. der Sicherheitsrat der Vereinten Nationen nach Kapitel VII der Charta der Vereinten Nationen, 2. der Rat der Europäischen Union im Rahmen des Kapitels 2 des Vertrags über die Europäische Union oder 3. die Bundesrepublik Deutschlandwirtschaftliche Sanktionsmaßnahmen beschlossen haben.

A problem which SIEMENS was aware of and looked for a workaround; and found it according to ‘SWR’. ‘SWR’ wrote: “Confidential company documents available to SWR show that Siemens management was aware of the problem with the Israel boycott declaration. In presentation PM040, which is classified as confidential, the risks are explained to the Executive Board and three options for action are discussed.” The ‘SWR’ drawn as resume: ‘A legal trick makes the trade legal.’

It means, it is simply forbidden to boycott other states due to the requirements of a third state. However, SIEMENS found a workaround, which for no surprise is OK for the German state, which is the largest European trade partner of the Islamic terror state Iran.

Benjamin Weinthal wrote on FOX News: “Germany has consistently been the Islamic Republic’s most important trade partner. According to recently published statistics from the Federal Statistical Office of Germany, Germany exported more than $1.2 billion in merchandise to Iran from January to October 2022. Germany imported more than $277 million in goods from Iran.

Germany seems fine with SIEMENS

So, Germany will apparently always find a way to make good deals with Islamic regimes. The price is easily paid: Just declare to boycott Israel. The fine for violating German law ($7AWV) is ridiculous: up to 500.000 Euro. It is nothing to an order volume of about 341 million Euros.

The German State is fine with SIEMENS according to the quote of the speaker of the German Ministry of Economics and Climatechange, led by Robert Habeck as Minister (Green Party; Die GRÜNEN/Bündnis 90).

The speaker of the Ministry of Habeck said according to ‘SWR’: “In response to a SWR request, a spokesman for the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate explained: We cannot comment on the content of private contracts. Nor can any information be given about violations of foreign trade law, this is only possible for “organs of the administration of justice“(Original quote in German: “Auf eine SWR-Anfrage erklärt ein Sprecher des Bundesministeriums für Wirtschaft und Klima: Zum Inhalt privatrechtlicher Verträge könne man keine Stellung nehmen. Auch über Verstöße gegen das Außenwirtschaftsrecht könne man keine Auskünfte erteilen, dies sei nur “Organen der Rechtspflege” möglich.“)

What needs to be explained, however, is, for example, that the Attorney General, who is also to be understood as the body responsible for the administration of justice and is bound by the instructions of the Ministry of Justice. That means the executive branch’s hands are not tied, as the Ministry of Economics apparently would like us to believe. The Ministry of Economic Affairs can easily talk with the Ministry of Justice and request to open an investigation.

…and Illinois

The State of Illinois (USA) seems not so fine with SIEMENS. According to the ‘Meeting Minutes’ from June, 10th 2020 the ‘ILLINOIS INVESTMENT POLICY BOARD COMMITTEE ON ISRAEL BOYCOTT RESTRICTIONS‘ put SIEMENS put on a list along with Adidas.

According to the ‘Meeting Minutes’ letters have been sent to SIEMENS and Adidas because “.…they have been identified as Companies that Boycott Israel in violation of the Illinois statute and that further action be taken at the next meeting, as needed.

Also the ‘Jewish Virtual Library‘ listed SIEMENS along with Adidas on its list of ‘Companies that Boycott Israel in Violation of State Laws (2021)’.

And SIEMENS has also a criminal track record in Israel, according to GLOBES. GLOBES wrote: “Siemens Israel admitted to paying $9.5 million in bribes to Israel Electric Corp. executives between 1999 and 2004. The Tel Aviv District Court today found Siemens Israel guilty of conspiracy to commit a crime as part of a plea bargain agreement. The court has imposed a fine of NIS 63 million on Siemens Israel, which is controlled by the international Siemens AG conglomerate.

As a comment, one has to say that one sees the typical German business model of double standards and hypocrisy at work here. Laws and principles are there for Germany to be circumvented and only serve to morally blackmail others.

‘VonNaftali’ send press request to SIEMENS, State of Illinois and Ministry of Justice (Germany).

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