Outlook and Opportunities for Shipping

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1 Easing US Sanctions on Cuba Outlook and Opportunities for Shipping April 8, 2015 Matthew Thomas Blank Rome LLP Washington, DC

2 Cuba Sanctions Background Key features of embargo: Prohibition on US persons and subsidiaries bidi i entering into transactions ti in which Cuba or Cuban nationals have an interest Blocking of Cuban assets in the US 180 day rule prohibits entry into of vessel to load or unload freight if it has been involved in trade with Cuba within previous 180 days. Vessels barred from carrying unlicensed goods or passengers to or from Cuba, or goods in which h Cuba or a Cuban national lhas an interest. All exports (including vessels and aircraft) require export license, with a policy of denial Americans have been barred dfrom traveling to Cuba without ih a specific license for an approved purpose under one of 12 categories of travel. 2

3 US Cuba Trade: Exception for Certain US Exports Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act of 2000 (TSRA) allows 1 year export licenses for selling agricultural commodities, medical and humanitarian cargoes to Cuba All transactions required to be conducted in cash in advance or with financing from third countries Leading exports have been have been poultry, soybean oilcake, corn, and soybeans. Crowley Maritime operates weekly liner service ( ,000 TEU per annum, no backhaul) Dry bulk operators like Crimson and Dan Gulf licensed to provide service to Cuba, focused on agricultural cargo from Gulf ports. 3

4 US Exports to Cuba US (along with Canada and Brazil) already a leading Cuba trading partner 4

5 Recent Administration Cuba Changes President announced plans to reestablish diplomatic relations with Cuba on December 17, 2014 On January 16, 2015, the U.S. Department of the Treasury s Office of Foreign Assets Control ( OFAC ) OFAC) amended the Cuban Assets Control Regulations to loosen export and travel restrictions to Cuba On the same date, the U.S. Department of Commerce published its amendments to the Export Administration Regulations ( EAR ) related to Cuba administered by the Department s Bureau of Industry and Security ( BIS ).

6 Cuba Sanctions Travel Changes New regulations preserve the 12 existing categories of authorized travel to Cuba, such as travel for educational activities, journalistic and religious activities, and humanitarian projects, but remove the restriction requiring travelers to apply for and obtain a specific license approving of their specific trip. (Self certification and recordkeeping requirements apply.) Travel solely for tourism purposes remains prohibited by statute and will not be permitted until Congress acts. U.S. financial institutions will also be permitted to enroll merchants and to process U.S. credit and debit card transactions in Cuba for travel related and other transactions Returning travelers: $400 in goods for personal use, including $100 tobacco and alcohol

7 12 Categories of Travel Family visits Official business of the U.S. government, foreign governments, and certain intergovernmental organizations Journalistic activity Professional research and professional meetings Educational activities Religious activities Public performances, clinics, workshops, athletic and other competitions, and exhibitions i Support for the Cuban people Humanitarian projects Activities of private foundations or research or educational institutes Exportation, importation, or transmission of information or information materials Support for certain authorized export transactions 7 4/16/2015

8 New Rules for Airlines, not Passenger Vessels General license to permit U.S. travel agents and airlines to provide travel and air carrier services to Cuba without a license Ferry service still not permitted, but individual license applications will be considered MTSA maritime security rules still an obstacle, as Cuba still deemed by the Coast Guard to not provide adequate security against maritime terrorist threat Some operators reportedly tdl applying li for licenses, no signals from OFAC yet about outcome 8 4/16/2015

9 Broader Range of Exports Permitted New exception to the export license requirement allows the export of goods that generally support the Cuban people Wide range of goods that fall into this category include building materials, equipment and tools for use by the private sector, items for use in scientific, archaeological, educational and sporting activities New telecom related exports Potential boost for containerized trade, breakbulk and project cargo? 9 4/16/2015

10 Key Changes for Shipping and Commodities New exceptions to the 180 day rule which bars vessels from the U.S. for 180 days after calling Cuba to engage in the trade of goods or the purchase or provision of services: - shipment of cargoes exported under Commerce Department authorization (including agricultural, medical, telecommunications); - carriage of students, faculty, and staff that are authorized to travel to Cuba; - vessels engaged in the exportation or re exportation to Cuba from a third country of most agricultural commodities, medicine, or medical devices (effectively ends the U.S. US blacklisting i of dry cargo ships trading agricultural l goods to or from Cuba). In addition, financing terms for U.S. agricultural exports are liberalized, permitting payment on title transfer (rather than prior to loading, as previously required). BIS rules still do not allow vessels to depart the U.S. for Cuba without an export license.

11 Outlook and Issues for US Cuba Shipping Further sanctions relief up to Congress New Mariel port: $1b, 1m TEU hub and FTZ, looking forward to end of embargo Outlook for ferry services, cruse lines, yachting? Closer cooperation on maritime environmental and emergency response Tanker trade? Potential for Cuba exports to US?Zinc? Agricultural commodities? 11 4/16/2015

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