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United States Further Eases Cuba Trade Embargo and Terminates Burma/Myanmar Sanctions; Recent Developments in U.S. Sanctions Against Iran and Russia

October 17, 2016, Covington Alert

Effective today, the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”) has amended the Cuban Assets Control Regulations (“CACR”) and the U.S. Commerce department’s Bureau of Industry and Security (“BIS”) has amended the Export Administration Regulations (“EAR”) to expand permissible dealings involving Cuba, further easing the longstanding U.S. trade embargo and continuing a policy shift that the Obama Administration announced in December 2014.

Simultaneous with last Friday’s announcement of these changes, President Obama issued a Presidential Policy Directive that outlines a policy of “normalization” as to U.S.-Cuba relations. The directive states that the embargo — elements of which remain in place — is “outdated” and renews calls for Congress to lift the remaining restrictions.

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