US Congress to take up bill to lift embargo on Cuba

Washington, July 29 (IANS) The US Congress will take up a bill to end the 55-year-old US embargo on Cuba and allow American private companies to freely trade with the communist island.

Republican Congressman Tom Emmer and Democrat Kathy Castor introduced the bill in this regard in the US Congress on Tuesday, Xinhua reported.

“Today marks a new and exciting chapter for the US-Cuba relationship,” said Emmer, in a passionate defence of the lifting of the embargo in front of Republican leaders who have been opposing it.

The “Cuba Trade Act of 2015” was introduced a week after the US and Cuba re-opened embassies in Havana and Washington, respectively, and officially resumed diplomatic relations seven months after presidents Barack Obama and Raul Castro announced the thaw in simultaneous speeches on December 17.

The bipartisan bill seeks to facilitate trade between companies of both countries but prohibits taxpayer funds from being used on promotion or development of these new markets.

“This legislation will improve our position within the region, giving the US a seat at the table and increased leverage as we support political transformations in Cuba,” said Emmer.

It will not only provide an economic boost in the US, but will also help the Cuban economy and its people flourish.

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