North Carolina & Cuba in the News
News & Observer: NC will gain from better U.S. relations with Cuba
Already, the News & Observer's Under the Dome reports, the North Carolina's agricultural products are exported to the island through an exception to the embargo for agriculture and pharmaceuticals.
PR Newswire: North Carolina students return from Cuba experience
Inspired by Fabien Cousteau’s remarks in April 2015 at North Carolina State University, Scuba Club leadership at Cary Academy decided to go for the seemingly impossible and plan a diving and cultural expedition to Cuba. Cousteau, a grandson of the late Jacques Cousteau, stated that Cuba has some of the most beautiful dive sites in the world.
Supporters of lifting the U.S.-Cuba trade embargo say North Carolina businesses - particularly those in agricultural, pharmaceutical and travel industries - could see new opportunities if relations with the Caribbean country improve.
During a historic meeting, President Barack Obama and Raul Castro discussed a wide range of topics Monday, including travel restrictions, business and trade. Part of the conversation included Horace Clemmons and Saul Berenthal, two North Carolina business leaders who started a business in Cuba.
President Barack Obama’s trip to Cuba marks a new era for the relationship between Cuba and the United States. He is the first U.S. President to visit Cuba in nearly a century, but a Piedmont church has been building a relationship with people there for the last several years.
Jeff Hedgepeth, of Nash County, who has visited Cuba many times, says the Cuban people “grip his heart.” He works with churches and is currently planning a trip in June. Now, with fewer travel restrictions, he said he is looking forward to a continued improvement in relations with Cuba.
On Sunday, a delegation of North Carolina farmers, agribusiness executives, state agriculture officials and NC State University officials is headed to Cuba. They are hoping it is the first step in trying to sell the country agricultural products. Analysts believe Cuba could become a $2 billion a year market for American farm products.
A month after a North Carolina trade delegation visited Cuba, members of the group are working to find ways to move forward in rebuilding the relationship between the U.S. and Cuba. Agricultural officials and members of the North Carolina Farm Bureau toured farms and markets to get a better idea of the crops Cuban farmers produce and the challenges they face.
When conversations happen in different languages, things can often get lost in translation. But in a chat between farmers form Cuba and North Carolina, tobacco is a word that crosses linguistic boundaries. And while the word may be the same, there are major differences between how tobacco is produced in North Carolina and Cuba. North Carolina’s agriculture delegation, which has been exploring new trade opportunities in Cuba this week, notice the differences right away.