Roll-back of Cuba policies will hurt Louisiana's economy, report says

Roll-back of Cuba policies will hurt Louisiana's economy, report says

Roll-back of Cuba policies will hurt Louisiana's economy, report says

The Trump administration is mulling over rollbacks to Obama-era policies aimed at easing tensions between Cuba and the United States.


President Donald Trump is considering rolling back Barack Obama's executive orders that liberalized trade and travel with Cuba - but the president is unlikely to break diplomatic relations or close the US embassy in Havana, multiple sources told NBC News.

Economic impact analysis from anti-embargo group Engage Cuba released a report detailing what it believes would happen if Trump does opt to rescind polices enacted by former president Barack Obama on Cuba-as he is reportedly mulling doing.

Seven U.S. airlines fly to the country and nine American cruise lines have scheduled service to Cuba since tourism rules were relaxed to include 12 categories of authorized travel, including the popular "people to people" option that most Americans use. He is also considering, the report said, tightening restrictions on Americans traveling to Cuba.

The airline sector alone would lose almost $2 billion in revenue and 4,000 jobs over four years.

The report doesn't specifically say how much money and jobs Louisiana stands to lose out on.

Those estimates consider USA airline and cruise employees who have already been hired because of new services to Cuba and also the number of employees that airlines and cruise lines potentially wouldn't hire over the next four years if they had to cut back or cease their Cuba operations. Marriott International's Starwood is the only USA hotel company to manage a property in Cuba with at least three more properties in the pipeline.

The Obama administration followed the announcement with a series of regulatory and diplomatic changes that allowed US citizens to travel to Cuba and purchase some Cuban products, like rum and cigars.

Engage Cuba's analysis didn't examine how many have actually been generated since the USA and Cuba began to normalize relations on December 2014, or the total economic impact since then.

Though there is strong support from the Republicans in Congress and agency heads to preserve the Obama administration's policies, Sen. Obama's decision to restore ties with Havana removed a decades-old burden from our relationships with Latin American states, and Trump would be a fool to want to put things back the way they were.

The number of US citizens visiting Cuba increased 74 percent from 2015 to 2016, according to the Cuban Ministry.

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