Changing US Policy on Cuba: Impact on Cuba Investors and Businesses

On 21 March, members of the Cuba Initiative were invited to participate in an invaluable discussion during which industry experts shed light on the implications President Trump’s threats to end the waiver on Title III of the Helms Burton Act. Title III allows US nationals to sue for damages suffered by confiscation or nationalism of property owned at the time of the Cuban revolution, which is likely to have implications for British investors that hold assets in Cuba.

After introductions by our Chairman of the Cuba Initiative Lord Triesman, legal specialists on US-Cuba trade, Robert Muse, provided insights into the history of the Helms Burton Act, and the implications of the extraterritorial nature of the Title’s provisions for beneficiaries of assets that fall under the Act.

Hermenegildo Altozano, Partner at Bird&Bird, specialist on Cuba and Member of The Caribbean Council Advisory Committee, shared from his legal expertise on the legal recourse available to British and European firms that trade with Cuba.

Fernando Ponz, Deputy Head of Division of the European External Action Service, and Rafia Choudhury, Head of Mexico, Central America and Cuba Team at the FCO shared on the political considerations of British and European policy makers in light of the US’s toughened policy in the Latin America and reiterated the EU and the UK’s commitment to supporting European and British interests in Cuba.

Presentations were followed by an informative discussion during which our members present at the event asked targeted questions regarding the implications of Helms Burton for their businesses.

The event was hosted and sponsored by Bird&Bird.