Cuba, Jamaica and Cayman Island agree to Cuba's holidays promotion plan
Representatives of Cuba, Cayman Islands and Jamaica met during the Miami International Boat Show to draft a strategy to handle the predicted rise in American tourists taking Cuba holidays via boats if the current travel ban is lifted by President Obama.
Policies and regulations are being put into place by representatives of Cuba, the Cayman Islands and Jamaica to handle the predicted increase in American tourists taking Cuba holidays by boat or ship if President Obama lifts the current ongoing embargo on US-Cuba travel.
The representatives met at this year's Miami International Boat Show and included Commodore Jose Miguel Diaz Escrich, from Cuba's major marina provider, Marlin; Dale B. Westin, from the Port Authority of Jamaica; and Neville Scott, from the Cayman Island marina.
The U.S Coast Guard and Florida vessel registration authorities show figures of more than 600,000 boats in Florida which are capable of making the 90 mile sea trip from South Florida to Cuba should the Cuba travel ban be lifted. For over 50 years, U.S boats have been banned from visiting Cuba and if the embargo is lifted, Cuba's marinas could see a significant influx of tourists taking holidays to Cuba via boats and cruise ships. This increase in visitors would bring a welcome boost for the island's tourism and economy including Cuba hotels, attractions, and local businesses.
The representatives agreed that if the ban was lifted or relaxed, this could be the makings of a new Central Caribbean cruising ground which would consist of Cuba primarily, plus Jamaica and the Cayman Islands.
The formation of a new Caribbean Marines Trade Association could also be in the pipeline which would promote yachting holidays in Cuba and the Central and Western Caribbean. To date, the main yachting destination of the Caribbean is in the east and includes the British Virgin Islands, Trinidad, Tobago, the Bahamas and Turks and Caicos.
Over the past year, President Obama has been relaxing the decades-long embargo in stages, firstly allowing Cuba-American residents to visit family in Cuba, and then earlier this year the President eased restrictions in American travellers visiting the Caribbean island for cultural, religious, academic or educational purposes.
The fate of the Cuba travel embargo largely lies in the hands of the U.S. Congress and U.S. Rep. Ilena Ross Lehtenin, who is now controlling the House Foreign Relations Committee, but President Obama does have the authority to relax elements of the ban.
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