Trump Changes Course on Cuba; Impact to Ag Unclear

Jun 16, 2017
Not so fast, buddy.
Sorry, rice, you are't on the list
MIAMI, FL - For months USA Rice has been warning that some of President Trump's key economic advisors are decidedly anti-Cuba and could influence the otherwise pro-trade President to take an anti-trade stance with regard to the Island.

Those forces may have carried the day, at least for now, with the President expected to announce here today that he is asking the Commerce and Treasury Departments to take the next 30 days to rework some policies put in place by his predecessor, President Obama.

Specifically, there is expected to be a ratcheting down of travel allowances, or at least more stringent enforcement of the existing policies.  However, in what is an unclear but possibly harmful development for agriculture, the President will likely attempt to ban any commercial dealings with the Cuban military.

In a country where the lines between government and industry are blurred, the impact this shift could have on relationships with Alimport, the official government importer of agricultural products, is uncertain.

"We continue to advocate for the normalization of commercial trade and business relationships with the people of Cuba," said Betsy Ward, president & CEO of USA Rice.  "Returning to policies that have not only not worked for half a century, but also harmed American farmers is not in the interests of the rural citizens who helped elect President Trump and who he said he was going to put first."
 

Sign-Up for the Daily

Recent Articles

  • Rice Has Got It Going On!

    Oct 16, 2018

    Raceland Sugar Mill opened up its facility to host a tour and meeting for members of Louisiana commodities from across the state. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue was there, along with Congressmen Ralph Abraham and Garrett Graves, Louisiana Commissioner of Agriculture Dr. Mike Strain, and State Senator and sugar producer Brett Alain. Full story
  • USA Rice Road Trip Heads to the Pacific Northwest

    Oct 15, 2018

    The USA Rice Domestic Promotion put the 2,000+ mile Midwest leg in the books and has now traded fertile ag land for lush landscapes of the Pacific Northwest. Full story
  • Congressman Visits Rice Festival & Talks with Local Rice Farmers

    Oct 12, 2018

    Last Saturday, at the Texas Rice Festival here, a group of local rice farmers hosted a meeting with Congressman Brian Babin (R-TX) on current issues affecting them and other farmers in Texas’ 36th Congressional District. Full story
  • WASDE Report Released

    Oct 11, 2018

    The 2018/19 rice crop is reduced 700,000 cwt to 218.8 million on lower yields. The average yield forecast is lowered 24 pounds per acre to 7,539 pounds. Decreases are in Texas and California. Full story
  • Successful Online Promotions in Korea

    Oct 11, 2018

    Auctions for U.S. medium grain table rice here had been suspended for several months which led to a dearth of U.S. rice in the market. Full story