|Monday, 22 February 2016 14:59|
Following last week’s multiple announcements in US-Cuba Policy, the Daily Business Review released an article discussing the seemingly unilateral concessions. Not only were commercial flights reinstated between the United States and Cuba, an American company has been granted approval for opening a tractor assembly plant on the island, and the President has confirmed an upcoming visit to Castro’s Island. These sudden changes have left many questioning what the United States is getting in return for the loosening of the embargo.
Mauricio Tamargo, attorney at PobleteTamargo, spoke with the Daily Business Review regarding these concerns. "These concessions to the Cuban government are of great concern and I believe have an adverse affect on the prospect of a settlement of the certified claims because Cuba wants trade and commerce normalized with the U.S.," said Tamargo. Once trade is normalized, "Cuba will have no incentive to pay the certified claimants."
Tamargo, the former chairman of the U.S. Foreign Claims Settlement Commission, supports charging a 10 percent tax on all transactions with Cuba "as the cost of doing business with stolen property" to pay claimants whose property is being used by the government, state businesses, foreign embassies, factories, and air and seaports.
Currently, the 5,913 certified claims have yet to be paid. "Congress has repeatedly reaffirmed its position that these claims must be paid before it would lift the embargo," Tamargo said.
On February 11, the House Judiciary held a subcommittee hearing to discuss resolution of these claims as well as other matters surrounding Cuba’s debts to Americans. For information on the hearing, please see "Resolving Issues With Confiscated Property in Cuba, Havana Club Rum and Other Property"
The entire article in Daily Business Review can be found here.