Cuba at a crossroads: Change, both inside and outside this island country, brings hope and concern

Cuba at a crossroads: Change, both inside and outside this island country, brings   hope and concern

Dear readers,

Naples Daily News journalists Maria Perez and David Albers recently spent two weeks reporting in Cuba.

Their reporting, in partnership with the McGraw Center for Business Journalism at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, found that the communist nation is undergoing significant economic changes.

(Haga clic aquí para leer la versión en español de Cuba en la encrucijada.)


Patches of evening light illuminate street traffic in Centro Havana, Cuba on July 11, 2015. (David Albers/Staff)

In many sectors a capitalist spirit is blossoming. From car mechanics, to eateries, tattoo artists, even some farmers are profiting from the basic business principle of supply and demand.

A record number of tourists are visiting the island, and a major port expansion in Mariel is complete. Buoyed by President Barack Obama’s aggressive push to improve relations between the countries, and the opening of respective embassies, Cubans on the island feel a sense of cautious optimism.

But any optimism must be tempered by realities: Many multinationals consider Cuba a risky investment. The U.S. embargo restricts trade between both nations. Cuba stifles the press, jails dissidents, and countless citizens take to the Florida Straits to flee oppression and seek economic freedom.

Yet that close proximity to Cuba make it a natural, business partner. Many U.S. companies want to trade and invest there. In Florida – from Naples to Apopka to Miami – our tourists, remittances, cattle and auto parts feed the island economy.

We hope you enjoy our special section. Scroll down to begin viewing the digital presentation. You may also navigate through the stories using the menu icon at the top.
Thank you for your support and trust.

Manny Garcia
Naples Daily News Editor

Submit a Comment