August 20, 2019
Latest News

EU urges companies to counterattack US lawsuits on Cuba

Havana, Apr 16 (efe-epa).- European Union authorities on Tuesday committed themselves to protecting the interests of businessmen from the bloc in Cuba and urged them to "counterattack" if they are sued by US companies when, later this week, the Donald Trump administration authorizes actions to recover property nationalized by the Havana regime.

"We have a rule that allows European companies to counterattack prospective (legal) initiatives by US companies," said the general director of the European Commission's Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development, Stefano Manservisi, at a press conference in Havana.

Manservisi's remarks come a few hours after it became known that on Wednesday Washington will announce the activation, as of May 2, of Title III of the Helms-Burton Act, which makes more stringent the US embargo on Cuba and will allow companies to sue in US courts to recover assets expropriated by Cuba after the 1959 Revolution.

Meanwhile, the EU ambassador in Havana, Alberto Navarro, promised to "protect our businessmen who have invested or have wanted to invest here," and he also alluded to "antidote legislation" from 1996 that protects Europeans "in the case of lawsuits or rulings by a US judge."

"European citizens have the obligation not to cooperate and, at the same time, the possibility of making claims against (US) companies who may have asked for indemnities for alleged uses made of properties confiscated here in Cuba," he said.

A top US official told EFE and other media outlets on Tuesday in Washington that on Wednesday the US government "will put an end to some 20 years of suspensions of Title III of the Helms-Burton Act," a measure that will become effective on May 2.

The formal announcement will be made on Wednesday by the State Department and will be confirmed by Trump's national security adviser, John Bolton, in a speech he will deliver in Miami and during which he will announce more sanctions against Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua.

Title III was created to allow US citizens, including naturalized Cubans, to be able to sue in US courts companies that allegedly have benefitted from the use of properties in Cuba that belonged to the US firms before the Revolution headed by Fidel Castro.

When that law was approved in 1996, the European bloc and other countries with business interests on the communist island vehemently opposed it because they feared that their companies would be sued in the US and, in addition, the EU filed a complaint against Washington before the World Trade Organization on the matter.

The controversy concluded with a compromise by the US to keep Title III suspended in exchange for the withdrawal of the EU's complaint, a standoff that had been maintained for more than two decades until the Trump administration began threatening to break that agreement and then moved to do so.

Spain and other countries in recent weeks asked the US government not to carry out its threat to activate Title III, something that could affect Spanish companies such as the Melia group, which owns numerous hotels in Cuba, several of which occupy properties nationalized six decades ago.

The EU envoy to Cuba also remarked on the US financial and trade embargo against Cuba, saying that it runs counter to international law and all European countries are against the punitive measure that has been in place for almost 60 years.

The Helms-Burton Act, otherwise known as the Cuban Liberty and Democratic Solidarity (Libertad) Act of 1996 is a US federal law which strengthens and continues Washington's embargo against Cuba.

News history
Focus is on Macri's goals, Argentina's incoming finance minister says

Buenos Aires, Aug 19 (efe-epa).- Incoming Argentine Finance Minister Hernan Lacunza said Monday that he could not discuss the details of his meeting with...

US gives China's Huawei another 90-day reprieve on sanctions

Washington, Aug 19 (efe-epa).- Chinese tech giant Huawei Technologies on Monday criticized the sanctions imposed by the Donald Trump administration as being...

Iran faces the scourge of fuel smuggling

By Artemis Razmipour

China urges Trump to keep his word, allow business with Huawei in US

Beijing, Aug 19 (efe-epa).- Beijing on Monday urged Donald Trump to keep his word and allow companies in the United States to do business with Chinese tech...

Trump acknowledges US' interest in buying Greenland from Denmark

Washington DC, Aug 18 (efe-epa).- The president of the United States on Sunday said that Greenland was strategically interesting for his country, although...

Japan's trade deficit widened by 9.8 percent in July

Tokyo, Jul 19 (efe-epa).- Japan had a trade deficit of 249.6 billion yen ($2.35 billion) in July, a 9.8-percent increase compared to the same month last...

Trump defends China policy, says US economy is world's best

Washington, Aug 18 (efe-epa).- President Donald Trump on Sunday defended his strategy versus China, on whose goods Washington has imposed heavy tariffs as...

Anti-government rally in Hong Kong

By Steven Russolillo, Joanne Chiu and Eli Binder

Lacunza to be Argentina's new treasury minister as Dujovne quits

Buenos Aires, Aug 18 (efe-epa).- President Mauricio Macri said Sunday that Hernan Lacunza "is the right person" to replace former Finance Minister Nicolas...

Quito video art makes viewers reflect on migration, environment and memories

Quito, Aug 16 (efe-epa).- An unprecedented exhibition in the Ecuadorian capital is making viewers reflect on such concepts as migration, the environment and...

Delivery workers unite to protect themselves from Mexico City dangers

By Zoilo Carrillo

Woody Allen wraps up filming of new romantic comedy set in Spain

San Sebastian, Spain, Aug 16 (efe-epa).- American director Woody Allen on Friday completed shooting on his latest movie, a romantic comedy filmed in Spain...

UK government names Ataer Holdings preferred bidder for British Steel

By Oliver Griffin

Foreign tourism to Mexico up 7 pct. in 1st half of 2019

Mexico City, Aug 15 (efe-epa).- The number of foreign tourist arrivals in Mexico in the first half of 2019 rose 7 percent relative to the same period of...

Iran: US attempt to stop release of seized tanker an act of attempted piracy

Tehran, Aug 15 (efe-epa).- Iran on Thursday said the United States' unsuccessful attempt to prevent Gibraltar's authorities from releasing a seized Iranian...

Alibaba's sales jump 42%, beating expectations

By Stu Woo

Japanese economy starts feeling effects of diplomatic spat with South Korea

By Antonio Hermosin

Bogota has many advantages in attracting foreign investment

Bogota, Aug 14 (efe-epa).- In the past 10 years, Bogota has received some $20 billion in foreign investment via more than 1,100 projects that have created...

Wall Street plunges, Dow Jones down 3.05 pct.

New York, Aug 14 (efe-epa).- Wall Street closed Wednesday with heavy losses and the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the benchmark indicator, dropped 3.05...

Panama Canal optimistic after China gets reprieve on US tariffs

Panama City, Aug 14 (efe-epa).-The Panama Canal on Wednesday applauded the United States government's decision to postpone new tariffs on a range of Chinese...

ECLAC: FDI in Latin America up last year for 1st time since 2012

Santiago, Aug 14 (efe-epa).-Foreign direct investment in Latin America rose 13.2 percent in 2018, ending a five-year spell of FDI contraction, the Economic...

Germany's economy contracts by 0.1 percent in Q2

Berlin, Aug 14 (efe-epa).- Germany's economy contracted by 0.1 percent in the second quarter of 2019, the country's statistics office said in a statement...

Hong Kong court bans protests from airport

Hong Kong, Aug 14 (efe-epa).- A Hong Kong court on Wednesday ordered demonstrators to cease their protests at the city's airport and to stop interfering...

CBS, Viacom to merge, creating ViacomCBS

New York, Aug 13 (efe-epa).- CBS and Viacom announced on Tuesday a merger agreement that will reunite the two companies, which previously merged but then...

I agree Welcome to news4europe.eu. We use cookies to improve your online experience. Find out more.