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UNIBusiness leaders speed up "Cuban thaw"

June 24, 2016 - 12:00am
UNIBusiness Editor
Cuba America

In 2014, United States and Cuba began the "Cuban Thaw", which would improve diplomatic and trade relations between the two countries. One group highly interested in that is the bipartisan, non-profit organization Engage Cuba.They are the leading coalition of private companies and organizations working to end the travel and trade embargo on Cuba. They are currently expanding the coalition of support throughout the country, while also facilitating relationships between U.S. businesses and Cuba, as well as lobbying Congress to lift the embargo.

Recently, Engage Cuba organized the Engage Cuba Iowa State Council to build statewide support for Congressional action to end the travel ban and trade embargo on Cuba. The council will be made up of prominent leaders across Iowa from a broad range of sectors including agriculture, business, manufacturing, education, energy, healthcare, as well as government and religious leaders. Two UNIBusiness faculty members have been chosen to sit on the Council including, Bradford Chair in International Business and Director of Global Programs, Farzad Moussavi and Dean, Leslie Wilson. Both are very optimistic on the council's potential. "It is a strategic objective of ours at UNIBusiness to open up the world for our students. Our work with the Council allows Dean Wilson and myself to advance this objective by making Cuba more accessible to our students and making UNI more accessible to Cuban students," Moussavi said. Dean Wilson later commented, "I hope this Council allows us to better understand the Cuban economy relative to the opportunities for economic engagement with Iowa and cultural engagement with the University." The Council's main responsibility will be to discover ways to expand trade with Cuba while providing opportunities for Iowa businesses and empowering the Cuban people.

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