New rules became effective on Thursday, November 9th
Americans will be banned from doing business with 180 entities tied to the Cuban military and intelligence and security services, including an extensive list of hotels, stores, marinas, tourist agencies, industries and even two rum makers owned by the government. U.S. companies will also be banned from investing in the Mariel Special Economic Development Zone.
This new policy is a partial rollback of the Obama Administration’s Cuba policy. Travel is still permitted but restricted and the new rules target mainly economic activity. The U.S. still maintains an economic embargo against Cuba that prohibits travel for tourism purposes. Obama-era rules expanded visa categories for travel to Cuba and allowed for U.S. travelers to book flights online and secure a visa prior to going to Cuba. Now, travelers need to be accompanied by a U.S.-based tour guide who is required to ensure that travelers are engaged in approved activities.
Direct flights and cruises to Cuba have not been eliminated.
To see press release from the State Department click here: