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US flights and cruises benefit Cuba millionaire, says report

Cuba is becoming a tourist market of about one billion dollars for US airlines and cruises if the projections of 2017, 2018 and 2019 are added, according to the United States-Cuba Economic and Trade Council.

According to a study published today, cruise lines will accumulate more than 761 million dollars in gross revenue during those three years by transporting more than 570,000 passengers, while airlines will add another 228 million dollars.

The council noted that there are currently at least 335 itineraries on cruises to Cuba by Royal Caribbean, Carnival and Norwegian, all with headquarters in Florida, and other smaller lines, and predicted that these trips may increase.

He also estimated that these trips to the Caribbean island will leave Cuba earnings of more than 80 million dollars in passenger expenses, in addition to more than 21 million dollars in port taxes.

The US-Cuba Economic and Trade Council recalled that in 2016 the profits of Royal Caribbean, Carnival and Norwegian totaled 28,800 million dollars for their trips in 144 vessels to their different destinations.

In May of that year the ship “Adonia” of Fathom (subsidiary of Carnival) was the first to arrive after the diplomatic “thaw” between Havana and Washington undertaken by the then US president, Barack Obama.

The report, released today by John Kavulich, president of the Council, also counts more than 100 million dollars in tourism earnings for Florida, the starting point and arrival point for most flights and cruises to the island.

He specified that this income is especially in hotels, restaurants and land transportation services in South Florida.

However, despite the opening undertaken by Obama, the US economic embargo against Cuba still persists, which can only be lifted by Congress.

To this is added that several measures of Obama’s policy of rapprochement, which also reinstated in 2016 US commercial flights. to Cuba, they are suffering a setback under the presidency of Donald Trump.

The Republican has imposed new limitations, including the elimination of individual trips to make contacts with the Cuban people (the modality “people to people”, in English), one of the most popular.

The measure is part of the new restrictions of the Trump government to freeze normalization with Cuba, which include banning transactions with certain government entities on the island.

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