Maersk Line, the world's biggest container shipping company, has stopped port calls to Iran  as Western sanctions pressure on the Islamic Republic mounts, a spokeswoman said on Tuesday.
Many of Iran's imports, including food and consumer goods, are transported by sea via container and bulker ships.
While food and consumer items are not targeted by sanctions, a growing number of Western firms, especially shipping related companies, are pulling back from trade with Iran due to the complexities of deals, whilst also fearing losing business elsewhere.
"Maersk Line has ceased to call in Iran," a spokeswoman for the unit of Danish group A.P. Moller-Maersk said.
"This is a pragmatic decision based on an assessment of balancing the benefits of doing limited business in Iran against the risk of damaging business opportunities elsewhere particularly the U.S."