US and Cuba re-establish a banking relationship



The most recent, successful talks between the US and Cuba have focused on re-establishing a banking relationship in between the two countries.  Banks already based in Cuba include Canadian banks Scotia Bank and the National Bank of Canada.  Other foreign banks already in Cuba include banks from Spain, the U.K., Mexico, Lebanon, the Netherlands and Trinidad and Tobago.

Resuming banking services will make it much easier for American tourists, businesses and diplomats to function in Cuba.

ABC News reported on the new development of US and Cuba re-establishing a banking relationship but did not name the U.S. bank in question..  However it was later revealed by CNBC that the U.S. bank is Stonegate Bank in Pompano Beach, Florida.

Cuba has established a banking relationship in the U.S., clearing another major obstacle to the countries re-establishing diplomatic relations, a senior State Department official said Tuesday.

The official refused to identify the bank, though news reports had suggested Cuba was negotiating with a Florida-based financial institution. The Cuban government will make an announcement soon, said the U.S. official, who wasn’t authorized to be quoted by name and briefed reporters anonymously.

There was no immediate response from Cuba’s government.

Securing banking operations was among Cuba’s biggest demands as diplomats.”

News Source: ABC News

The Cuban government has opened an account at Stonegate Bank in Pompano Beach, Florida, CNBC reported Wednesday. The move marks a significant step toward a restored diplomatic relationship between Cuba and the U.S.

The issue of banking has been among Havana’s top demands in negotiations with U.S. diplomats. Previously, Cuba’s diplomatic missions in Washington have been forced to conduct financial matters in cash. On Tuesday a senior U.S. State Department official confirmed that the Cuban government had secured access to American banking services but declined to say at which bank.

Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs Roberta Jackson told the Miami Herald in January that banking services were “very important to the functioning of embassies” and that U.S. diplomats were helping Cuba set up accounts stateside.

M&T Bank in New York previously handled financial matters for the Cuban Interests Section in Washington, which is formally a unit of the Swiss embassy. The bank terminated that relationship last year.

These steps towards US and Cuba to re-establish a banking relationship and renewing other diplomatic ties are very positive for business development and the tourism environment.

News Source: IBTimes

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