US Policy Towards Cuba Harms US Farmers

Prensa Latina

The US restrictions imposed on agricultural trade with Cuba harm the interests of US businessmen, who lost ground to their competitors in Asia and Latin America, according to a report of the group Engage Cuba. The report written in collaboration with US Agriculture Coalition for Cuba (USACC) refers to the benefits that a normal exchange in the industry would bring to the states of Iowa, Alabama, Indiana, Mississippi, Missouri, and North Dakota.

According to the report, the US agricultural entrepreneurs have lost Cuban market share to competitors in the European Union, Brazil, Argentina and Vietnam, because of Washington's policy towards the Caribbean country.

C. Parr Rosson, an economist and professor at the University of Texas A and M, stressed the importance of President Barack Obama's visit to Havana in March, as well as the increase in travel by US farmers to open the door to future business opportunities.

According to the report, Alabama and Iowa could have a greater presence in the Cuban market with its products, including poultry, dairy products, corn, rice, wheat and soybeans.

The USACC groups more than 90 agricultural companies and US state and national organizations.

In 2000, US Congress passed a law called the Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act, which allowed for the export of agricultural goods to Cuba, but under certain conditions.

However, this law does not allow us to offer financing, so it required cash in advance, something unusual in international trade.