Raúl Castro understood at a good time that Venezuela's oil subsidy would not be enough to sustain the foundations of the precarious Cuban economy. For this reason, since he took office as president of Cuba in 2008, he has managed to find formulas for rapprochement with the United States.
Thanks to the mediation of Pope Francis, the first contacts were established to the point that in September 2009, President Barack Obama lifted a series of restrictions that limited family trips to the island and raised the allowed amount of remittances from $500 to $2,000. per capita.
Then, in 2011, the administration of President Obama decided to broaden the spectrum for travel authorizations for Americans to Cuba.
For its part, the Cuban government began a process of immigration reform starting in 2013 and began issuing passports to Cubans who wished to travel to the US and other countries.
To date, the Obama Administration has issued a general order to allow Americans to travel to Cuba for the following activities:
- family visits
- government visits
- journalistic activities
- Research and professional meetings
- educational activities
- religious activities
- Public presentations, clinics, workshops, athletic and sports competitions, and exhibitions.
- Help for the Cuban people
- humanitarian projects
- Activities of private or research foundations or educational institutes
- Export, import or transmission of information or informational materials
- Certain expert transactions
Likewise, each authorized traveler was empowered to import $400 in Cuban products and transfer $10,000 per trip.
In May 2015, President Obama ordered the removal of Cuba from the list of countries that foster terrorist activities and immediately, in July, diplomatic relations between the two countries were restarted and the Cuban and US embassies were inaugurated in Washington. . In the Habana.
The latest advance in mutual relations has just taken place with the approval of measures that will allow North American companies linked to the transfer of parcels, telecommunications, foreign trade and news agencies to open offices, warehouses and retail outlets in Cuban territory. Now, local businessmen, professionals, executives and investors, along with their immediate families, will be able to travel to the island to promote their businesses.
It is impressive to see that, although the lifting of the economic embargo is still pending a legislative decision, significant progress is being made in sowing a new climate of bilateral relations.
The way things are going, we will soon see the first cruise ships dock in Cuban ports; Cubans will begin to enjoy an efficient Internet system whose penetration today is barely 5%; cell phones and credit and debit cards will become common use on the island; charter flights will be replaced by scheduled flights; North Americans will be able to open bank accounts in branches of North American banks in Cuba; and in general, entrepreneurs from both countries will routinely do business.
For entrepreneurs and owners of business in Florida the immense opportunities presented by the opening with Cuba should not go unnoticed. The “Sunshine State”, separated from the island by only 90 miles of sea, has a solid economy capable of supplying the thirsty Cuban market with the bulk of the goods and services that it eagerly requires.
Let's get the batteries, then!