New Policies in Cuba
Earlier this week it has become clear that President Trump is planning to take a different approach to Cuba than former President Obama. This aligns with his campaign promises of setting a more hard-line approach to relations with Cuba unless deals with them improve. During his term in office, Obama was able to re-ignite relations with Cuba allowing for travel to increase as well as easing sanctions on the Caribbean country.
Trump said shortly after his election that if Cuba were not to “make a better deal” he would have to “terminate deal.” This would mean reinstating limits on travel and trading to supposedly punish the government in Cuba led by Raul Castro, brother of Fidel Castro. Trump would most likely return to the same policies the U.S. has had for Cuba for the past 50 years until Obama, since the Cuban revolution. These policies were put in place by anti-Castro activists to hopefully persuade the Cuban government to switch from communism to a democracy. This hasn’t happened yet.
Opposed to these changes is the Engage Cuba, an organization which represents many companies who seek a positive relationship with Cuba. They have a predicted loss of $6.6 billion and a disruption of up to 12,000 American jobs. Industries such as hotels and airlines will have to deal with a loss in cooperation with Cuba. Starwood Hotels for example just recently made a deal to open lines in Cuba and multiple airlines who have just expanded routes to include Cuba will also have to adjust.
Looking at Cuban-Americans, most of them prefer to have good relations between the U.S. and Cuba, more along the lines of Mr. Obama’s policies. Additionally, the statistics have shown that in the 2016 presidential election, fewer Cubans voted for Trump, the Republican candidate than any other in the past. We’ll have to wait and see what Trump’s final action may be.