Thursday, January 21, 2016

Should the Embargo be Lifted?

     In December 2014, the US and Cuba agreed to restore diplomatic relations. Under the measures, the US opened an embassy in Havana, Cuba, and is also undertaking efforts to lift its 54-year trade embargo against Cuba, a move urged by Cuban president Raul Castro, but can only happen with the vote of the US Congress.   Cuban Rum still can’t be sold here in the United States even though there has been loosening of the regulations for tourists bringing back from their vacations.   US citizens travelling to Cuba can now bring up to US$100 worth combined of tobacco and rum back home with them.
     I feel that it is time for Congress vote to lift the embargo entirely.   There will still be legal tensions between Pernod Ricard and its partnership with the Cuban government and Bacardi over the Havana Club trademark, with the granting of the trademark to Pernod Ricard this week has already intensified.
     “Bacardi is shocked and very concerned by this unprecedented action taken by the United States government,” a statement from Bacardi read.   “In essence, this administration has reversed long-standing US and international public policy and law that protects against the recognition or acceptance of confiscatory actions of foreign governments”.
     “Bacardi has and will continue to pursue all the necessary legal actions to defend its position surrounding the legitimacy of Bacardi’s rights and ownership of Havana Club rum,” the group said.
     With or without these issued, it is really time to start trading with the Island of Cuba again, we trade with Russia, Vietnam, and other countries that cost more American lives, so what is the hang up?