As we also pointed out yesterday:
“The measure regarding the use of the dollar still does not mean that banking relations between Cuba and the U.S. have normalized. Cuban banks are still not allowed to have correspondent accounts in U.S. banks, which means that we must continue to operate via third parties, which increases operating and procedural costs…
“The prohibition on U.S. imports of Cuban products remains in place. The only thing that was modified was the absurd prohibition on U.S. citizens’ consumption of Cuban products and services in third countries.”
– Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez, Press Conference, Havana, March 17, 2016
Interesting to see how the press are reporting the latest changes to U.S. Commerce and Treasury regulations concerning Cuba.
“The new rules open international banking to Cuba and to commerce with dollars.” (L.A. Times)
Well, kind of. The dollar still can only be presented indirectly by Cuban financial institutions for payment through third country financial institutions. Common sense tells you that direct transfers are always less costly than transfers that make multiple stops along the way, so for Cuba the costs remain elevated, but at least non-Cuban banks can stop fretting about the possibility of being fined.
But why is nobody reporting this embarrassing bit?
“Americans traveling in Europe [may now] purchase and consume Cuban origin alcohol and tobacco products while abroad…“
So that Cohiba you smoked in London last month? Hope you didn’t video it on your cellphone.