News and Facts about Cuba

U.S. Manufacturers To Benefit From Cuban Embargo Lift

Report: U.S. Manufacturers To Benefit From Cuban Lift
By Margaret Sutherlin

The U.S. International Trade Commission has rendered its verdict on
Cuba: The market is ripe for U.S. business.

In a study released this week, the commission said that as relations
between the U.S. and Cuba normalize, U.S.-manufactured goods would
benefit from an embargo lift.

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While there is still a decades-old embargo on Cuba covering everything
from footwear to technology, Barack Obama has urged for
changes in recent years. He’s eased some bans, telecommunications
restrictions and made a historic state visit there last month. Only
Congress can vote to lift the trade embargo.

According to the USITC study, Cuba mostly imports and medical
supplies from the U.S. (which aren’t covered under the embargo), but
there is an opportunity for footwear. The commission was asked by the
Senate’s finance committee to examine the impact of the current trade
relations and future normalization between the two countries. The study
covered 2005-14.

The commission said that should the U.S. lift its embargo, leather
product sales and trade (which includes footwear, as well as handbags
and luggage) would increase to at least $900,000. Should Cuba also lift
its trade barrier, then leather product imports could top $1.1 million.

Overall, the study suggested estimated that total U.S. manufactured
exports could reach $1.6 billion from their current level of $225
million should both the U.S. and Cuba lift trade barriers.

While the potential for a new business relationship with Cuba is
promising, the study does caution that much of the development will rely
on not just the U.S. lifting the embargo, but Cuba actively
participating in trade, too.

“There are likely a number of opportunities for U.S. exporters of
manufactured goods in the event that U.S. restrictions on trade with and
travel to Cuba are lifted, and the proximity of the United States to
Cuba offers additional competitive advantages,” said the trade
commission in the study. “The United States can produce many of the
products that Cuba currently needs and ship most items at a lower cost
than competitors.”

Source: Report: U.S. Manufacturers To Benefit From Cuban Embargo Lift |
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