Chronology of measures imposed by the Trump administration against Cuba
by Milagros Pichardo
Translation by Rachell Tucker
Reprinted from Granma
Jan. 20, 2021
- June 8 The Office of Foreign Assets Control of the Treasury Department (OFAC) sanctioned the company American Honda Finance Corporation, for a value of USD 87,255, for approving 13 car leasing agreements between the Cuban embassy in Canada and a Honda dealer in Ottawa.
- June 16 Trump signs presidential memorandum repealing Obama agreements with Cuba.
- June 26 OFAC fined the US company American International Group for a value of 148,698 dollars for providing insurance coverage to various shipments of merchandise to or from Cuba.
- September 8 Donald Trump signed a memorandum in which he extended the application of economic sanctions for one year under the legal framework established in the Trade with the Enemy Act.
- September 26 OFAC prohibited a donation to an NGO in Cuba because the ship carrying the cargo belonged to the US company Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd.
- September 29 Suspension of the issuance of visas at the consulate in Havana.
- October 3 Expulsion of 15 officials from the Cuban Embassy in Washington.
- November 8 The State Department announced the creation of the List of Restricted Cuban Entities, in which it included 179 Cuban companies with which US citizens cannot carry out direct financial transactions.
- OFAC announced regulatory changes to the sanctions program against Cuba. Individual ‘town-to-town’ educational trips were eliminated.
- The Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) established a general policy for the denial of applications for licenses for export items that may be used by entities and sub-entities on the List of Restricted Cuban Entities.
- November 17 OFAC sanctioned the Belgian company bcc Corporate s.a. for 291,825 USD, for selling credit cards that were used to make purchases in Cuba.
- February 22 Donald Trump issued a Presidential Proclamation to extend the state of National Emergency that extended until 2019 the government’s ability to regulate the movement and anchoring of vessels that, within its territorial waters, are going to travel or are likely to travel To Cuba.
- September 10 Trump signed a memorandum in which he extended the application of economic sanctions to Cuba for a year under the legal framework established in the Trade with the Enemy Law.
- October 5 OFAC imposed a sanction of USD 5,263,171 on the bank j.p. Morgan Chase for conducting unauthorized transactions and services to clients included in the Specially Designated and Blocked Persons List between 2008 and 2012.
- November 15 The State Department updated the List of Restricted Cuban Entities, based on the incorporation of 27 new companies, for a total of 206.
- November 19 The banking-financial entity Société Générale s.a., based in France, agreed to a total payment of USD 1 340 231 916.05 to OFAC for processing 796 transactions involving Cuba.
- January 16 The Department of State announced its decision to suspend the application of Title III of the Helms-Burton Act for 45 days, effective 1st of February, in order, within that period, to study in detail the possibility of implementing Chapter III from now on.
- February 14 OFAC imposed a fine of $ 5,512,564 on Germany-based AppliChem GmbH for 304 apparent violations of the Cuban Assets Control Regulations.
- March 11 The State Department announced an update of the List of Restricted Cuban Entities, with the incorporation of five new sub-entities (Gaviota Hoteles Cuba, Hoteles Habaguanex, Hoteles Playa Gaviota, Marinas Gaviota Cuba and Fiesta Club Adults Only). With this they added 211 entities.
- April 5 OFAC included 34 vessels owned by the Venezuelan oil company PDVSA on its sanction list, as well as two other foreign companies (Ballito Shipping Incorporated and ProPer In Management Incorporated), alleging that they provided services to Caracas for the shipment of crude to Cuba.
- April 8 The Trump administration canceled the agreement signed in January between Major League Baseball (mlb) and the Cuban Federation of this sport, which would allow players from the island to play at that sporting level.
- April 9 OFAC imposed a sanction on Standard Chartered Bank, an entity of the banking-financial sector based in England, for apparent violations of the Regulations for the Control of Cuban Assets.
- April 11 OFAC imposed sanctions on the English companies Acteon Group Ltd. and 2h Offshore, in the amount of 227,500 and 213,866 USD, respectively.
- April 12 OFAC sanctioned four companies operating in Venezuela’s oil sector and nine vessels that were destined to transport Venezuelan crude, some of which would have transported oil to Cuba.
- April 15 OFAC imposed sanctions on UniCredit Bank Austria and Italy’s UniCredit Bank SpA.
- April 17 The Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, offered statements to the press announcing the full activation of Title III of the Helms-Burton Act, as of May 2, 2019.
- April 24 The State Department updated the List of Restricted Cuban Entities, by including five new entities, for a total of 216.
- June 4 OFAC announced a policy of denial of licenses for passenger transport trips (cruises), recreational vessels and private aircraft.
- OFAC ruled that US travelers arriving in Cuba under any of the 12 categories may not carry out direct financial transactions with companies included in the List of Restricted Cuban Entities.
- June 13 OFAC sanctioned the US companies Expedia Group Inc, Hotelbeds USA Inc and Cubasphere Inc. for alleged violations of the Regulations for the Control of Cuban Assets
- June 20 The State Department included Cuba in the worst category (level three) in a report on Human Trafficking.
- July 3 The Department of the Treasury included the company Cubametales in the List of Specially Designated Nationals (SDN).
- July 25 The State Department included two new institutions on the List of Restricted Cuban Entities, for a total of 218.
- September 6 OFAC updated the Regulations for the Control of Cuban Assets by imposing a limit of up to 1,000 USD per quarter on family remittances and suspended donation remittances (non-family), as well as transfers related to Cuba originating from and destination outside the US (U-Turn).
- September 13 Donald Trump extended for one more year the validity of the Law of Trade with the Enemy for Cuba.
- September 17 OFAC included in the List of Specially Designated Nationals (SDN) three individuals (two of Colombian nationality and one Italian) and 17 companies (12 based in Colombia, four in Panama and one in Italy), alleging that they were involved in the transportation of oil to Cuba.
- September 19 Expulsion of two officials from the Cuban mission to the UN.
- September 26 Inclusion of the Army General and his family on the immoral list of those punished
- September 30 Visa restrictions for Cuban officials associated with international medical cooperation programs, under Section 212 (a) (3) (c) of the Immigration and Nationality Law.
- October 1 OFAC imposed a fine of $ 2,718,581 on the General Electric company for 289 apparent violations of the Regulations for the Control of Cuban Assets.
- October 18 The Bureau of Industries and Security (BIS) announced new amendments to the Regulations for Export Administration and a general policy of denial of licenses for the leasing of aircrafts to Cuban state airlines.
- The BIS ordered the impediment to re-export to Cuba of foreign articles that contain more than 10% of US components.
- The BIS announced the revision of the License Exception “Support for the Cuban People” so that certain donations cannot be made to the Cuban government and the Communist Party.
- The BIS limited the export of goods destined to improve the telecommunications infrastructure to those that facilitate the “free flow of information” among the Cuban people.
- October 25 The Department of Transportation announced the suspension of all US airline flights from the US to Cuba, with the exception of those directed to the José Martí International Airport in Havana.
- November 15 The State Department updated the List of Restricted Cuban Entities, by adding five new entities, for a total of 223.
- November 26 OFAC announced the inclusion of the company Corporación Panamericana s.a to the List of Specially Designated Nationals.
- December 3 OFAC announced the inclusion of six vessels (one of the Panamanian flag and the rest Venezuelan) in the SDN for transporting crude oil to Cuba.
- December 9 OFAC announced the settlement, to avoid a civil lawsuit, with the Chicago-based Allianz Global Risks us Insurance Company in the amount of USD 170,535.
- OFAC announced the settlement, to avoid a civil lawsuit, with the company Chubb Limited, based in Switzerland, in the amount of USD 66,212, for carrying out transactions and other operations related to travel insurance to Cuba.
- December 20 Inclusion of Cuba on a Special Watch List, under the International Religious Freedom Law of 1998.
- December 31 The Caribbean Confederation of Professional Baseball (CBPC) informed the Cuban Baseball Federation that it will not be able to guarantee the presence of Cuba in the Caribbean Series, after giving in to pressure from the United States.
- January 2 Absurd inclusion of the Minister of the Far, General of the Army Corps, Leopoldo Cintra Frías, on the sanctioned list.
- January 10 The Department of Transportation suspended all charter flights between the US and Cuba, except those to the José Martí International Airport in Havana.
- February 26 The new regulations of the US company Western Union came into force, which eliminates the possibility of sending remittances to Cuba from third countries.
- May 6 OFAC announced a settlement of 257,862 USD, to avoid a civil lawsuit, with the entity Biomin America, due to apparent violations of the Regulations for the Control of Cuban Assets.
- May 13 Notification from the State Department to the US Congress regarding the certification of Cuba under Section 40A of the Arms Export Control Act, as a country that “does not fully cooperate” with US counter-terrorism efforts.
- June 3 The State Department announced the inclusion of seven entities in the List of Restricted Cuban Entities, among them the company Fincimex.
- June 5 The Treasury Department denied the renewal of the license that allowed Marriott International to operate a hotel in Cuba, while prohibiting the company from developing future business in the country.
- July 8 OFAC announced that it had reached a settlement of $134,523, to avoid a civil lawsuit, with the US company Amazon Inc., for accepting and processing orders on its websites, for people located or employed by foreign missions from Cuba.
- Inclusion of Cuba in the list of “foreign adversaries”, allegedly involved in conduct adverse to the national security of the United States.
- August 3 The Department of Transportation announced the suspension of all private charter flights between that country and Cuba, except those authorized to Havana and others for emergency medical purposes, search and rescue, and those considered of interest to the United States.
- August 6 Inclusion of Cuba in Level 4 of the State Department’s Travel Alert System.
- September 9 Donald Trump extended for another year the restrictions of the blockade against Cuba under the Trade with the Enemy Law.
- September 24 The Creation of the List of Prohibited Accommodations in Cuba was announced, which will incorporate entities under the ownership or control of the government, a government official, a member of the Communist Party, or close relatives of these.
- The importation into the United States of alcohol and tobacco products of Cuban origin was restricted.
- Authorization for persons subject to US jurisdiction to attend or organize professional meetings or conferences in Cuba was eliminated.
- The authorization by general license for transactions related to public performances, clinics, workshops, sports and other competitions and exhibitions was eliminated.
- September 28 A new update of the List of Restricted Cuban Entities of the State Department was announced, through the addition of American International Services (AIS) with which it added a total of 230 entities.
- September 30 OFAC included Luis Alberto Rodríguez López-Calleja on the List of Specially Designated Nationals. With the inclusion, there are 112 entries related to Cuba in the aforementioned list.
- October 1 OFAC released an agreement to avoid a civil lawsuit with New York-registered travel services company Generali Global Assistance, Inc (GGA). The amount to be paid by the entity was 5,864,860 USD.
- Presidential directive that extended for one year the restrictions on granting federal funds for cultural and educational exchanges to Cuba.
- October 23 OFAC prevents persons subject to US jurisdiction from processing remittances to and from Cuba that involve companies included in the State Department’s List of Cuban Restricted Entities. By virtue of these changes, shipments through Fincimex and AIS would be impossible.
- November 18 The Department of Transportation denied a request from the charter companies Skyway Enterprises, Inc. and IBC to operate flights to Cuba with humanitarian cargo.
- December 7 Maintenance on the Special Watch List under the International Religious Freedom Act, under which the Secretary of State annually designates governments that have “participated in or tolerated systematic, continuous and egregious violations of religious freedom.”
- December 21 OFAC included the entities Fincimex, Gaesa and Kave Coffee on the List of Specially Designated Nationals.
- December 31 OFAC imposed a sanction on the US company BitGo.
- Between 2019 and 2020, Cuba suffered the greatest impacts from the blockade, with losses estimated at more than 5 billion dollars. The Trump administration also put more than $50 million to fund subversion in Cuba, and created an Internet Task Force with the same goal.
- January 1 The Department of State included the Banco Financiero Internacional in the List of Restricted Cuban Entities.
- January 11 Inclusion of Cuba in the List of States Sponsoring Terrorism.
- January 14 Inclusion of Cuba in the list of Foreign Adversaries of the Department of Commerce, by virtue of an executive order signed by Trump.
- The US Department of Commerce announced new controls on the export of specific technologies and activities that may serve military intelligence in China, Cuba, Russia, Venezuela, and other countries that allegedly support terrorism and are subject to unilateral measures of USA
- The Export Control Regulations were amended to prohibit certain transactions that pose an undue or unacceptable risk to US national security in information and communications technology.
- January 15 OFAC announced the inclusion of the Cuban Ministry of the Interior and the Minister, Brigadier General Lázaro Alberto Álvarez Casas, on the List of Specially Designated Nationals.