Trump’s Biggest Cuba Deal

 

Cargo unloading at Mariel, Cuba. Photo: Dennis Arce López

Sue Ashdown

Back in the early years of the publicly available internet I used to spend a lot of time fighting telecom companies. Starting at my own state capitol and then moving on to Washington DC, I spent so much time at the FCC that I might have qualified for a rapid entry pass, if there were such a thing. This was back when net neutrality meant something besides giant oligopolies fighting amongst themselves to create the ultimate walled garden. The thousands of small entrepreneurs who first brought Americans online were the first casualty of Washington’s policy neglect and indifference in that era and it is still painful for me to contemplate their losses. Continue reading “Trump’s Biggest Cuba Deal”

Doing Business in Cuba – Myth vs. Reality

Over the past year and a half, as American business executives, journalists, and government officials have set off for Cuba in search of future business deals, we’ve had the opportunity to meet with a good many of them in Havana, while observing the comments of others from a distance. A common denominator appears to be their mental frame of reference. Like hermit crabs shuttling their habitats on their shoulders, it’s evident that more than half a century of missing information or misinformation has taken its toll, and the American view of Cuba has come to be largely governed by social myths.

The problem for any company considering future opportunities in this market just 90 miles south of Florida, is that social myths make the worst kind of compass. Business executives wandering distractedly in the fog of social myth become easy prey for grifters looking to take advantage of their confusion. Their international competitors can rest a little easier, knowing that Americans are so far behind the curve that even a lifted embargo will not be an immediate game changer.

Here are some of the misperceptions we hear expressed most often:

Myth #1: Recent changes in U.S. regulations have freed American companies to do business in Cuba. Continue reading “Doing Business in Cuba – Myth vs. Reality”