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Obama relaxes trade restrictions with Cuba – POLITICO

Obama relaxes trade restrictions with Cuba – POLITICO

The strikes make the U.S. openings to Cuba “irreversible,” President Barack Obama stated in an announcement.

The newest modifications construct on the president’s announcement in December 2014 to chart a brand new course for the U.S.-Cuba relationship, Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew stated in an announcement.

“The Treasury Department has worked to break down economic barriers in areas such as travel, trade and commerce, banking and telecommunications,” Lew stated. “Today’s action builds on this progress by enabling more scientific collaboration, grants and scholarships, people-to-people contact, and private sector growth.”

“These amendments will create more opportunities for Cuban citizens to access American goods and services, further strengthening the ties between our two countries,” Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker added. “More commercial activity between the U.S. and Cuba benefits our people and our economies.”

Read more: Obama makes travel to Cuba easier and lifts financial restrictions on Havana

The lifting of the restrict on cigars and rum applies solely to approved vacationers to Cuba.

The Office of Foreign Asset Control “is removing the monetary value limitations on what authorized travelers may import from Cuba into the United States as accompanied baggage,” the Treasury and Commerce departments stated.

All of the modifications are meant to broaden alternatives for scientific collaboration by authorizing sure transactions associated to Cuban-origin prescribed drugs and joint medical analysis; enhance dwelling circumstances for Cubans by increasing current authorizations for grants and humanitarian-associated companies, and enhance folks-to-folks contact in Cuba by facilitating approved journey and commerce, the departments stated. They additionally facilitate protected journey between the United States and Cuba by authorizing civil aviation security-associated companies; and bolster trade and industrial alternatives by increasing and streamlining authorizations regarding trade and commerce.

The announcement is the newest of the administration’s efforts to determine regular trade and diplomatic relations with the nation wanting Congress lifting the many years-outdated embargo. In March, Obama turned the primary sitting president to go to Cuba since Calvin Coolidge. The U.S. reopened its embassy in Havana in July 2015.

“We obviously are operating in the constraints of the embargo,” a senior administration official stated Friday throughout a press name. “We believe Congress should take steps to lift that embargo but we will do what can within that context to make these policy changes irreversible.”

Read more: Obama eases Cuba travel restrictions

With the administration believing the modifications have been guided by frequent sense, the official stated it appeared unlikely a future president would finish the direct flights now obtainable, roll again new trade openings or withdraw U.S. presence from Havana.

“We think it’s very unlikely any future president would think it makes any sense to close an embassy and essentially remove the benefits of having a diplomatic presence,” the official stated.

Last month, Obama nominated profession overseas service officer Jeffrey DeLaurentis to function envoy to the nation however the choice is unlikely to be confirmed by the Senate this 12 months.

“It’s hard to understand why we can have an ambassador to China but we can’t have an ambassador to Cuba,” the official stated.

The newest transfer will authorize collaboration between U.S. and Cuban medical researchers, permit U.S. residents to supply companies to enhance Cuba’s infrastructure and take away greenback limitations on the import of cigar, alcohol and different items for private use.

Read more: Obama lifts restrictions on Cuban rum, cigars

The new coverage may even permit private items starting from air conditioners to toothbrushes to be despatched on to Cuban residents. It additionally removes caps on the quantity of remittances U.S. residents can ship to Cuban family, which the administration hopes will create development within the non-public sector, an administration official stated.

Since the administration introduced it’s new Cuba coverage in 2014, the executive modifications have enabled a possible $6 billion in new trade alternatives, an administration official stated.

The administration’s coverage has been geared towards selling development within the non-public sector exterior of Cuba’s state-run economic system, however lots of the modifications introduced immediately might immediately profit authorities-owned enterprises producing cigars, rum and prescribed drugs.

Despite that, an official defended the regulatory modifications as having broad-primarily based advantages for the Cuban folks as a result of they create extra openness in important sectors like healthcare and tourism.

“We have designed the policy very much to have the maximum benefit to the Cuban people,” the official stated. “But in so doing we are not restricting engagement with the Cuban state.” <

Find more Obama lifts cuba travel restrictions – Indochina Airlines

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