German exports to Iran fell by almost half in the first six months of 2019, according to data reviewed by Reuters.

German businesses may be reducing ties to Iran to avoid getting snagged up in U.S. sanctions against the country.

“Sales to Iran plunged by 48 percent to 678 million euros ($758.8 million) from January through June year-on-year,” data from the Federal Statistics Office reviewed by Reuters showed. “Imports from Iran declined by 43 percent to nearly 110 million euros,” according to the report.

The U.S. administration withdrew from the 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and world powers in May 2018. The United States then reimposed sanctions on the Islamic republic, but European countries for the most part did not follow suit.

According to a CNBC report last month, Tehran is facing rising food prices and shortages. The Iranian government has sought to control the situation by instituting price controls and subsidies, but it is unlikely that these measures will be effective.

“As soon as people hear about a store that is going to receive a government shipment they form a line,” said Jafar Ghaffari, a cook in Tehran, according to the report. “It could take 10 hours, and you may not even get the sugar because they’ve run out. It’s frustrating.”

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