The Associated Press
Mobile Mayor Mike Dow has signed a letter calling for President Bush to work with Congress members seeking to lift Cuban travel and sales restrictions.
Dow is one of 33 who signed the May 20 letter issued by Americans for Humanitarian Trade With Cuba. The letter raises concerns about restrictions on Cuban-Americans visiting relatives on the island, allowing one visit every three years and limiting how much money visitors can spend. There are also restrictions on the sale of agricultural products and medicine.
“If we can trade with Vietnam, we can sure trade with little Cuba,” said Dow, who served in the Vietnam war.
The United States has enforced an embargo against Cuba for more than four decades after the rise of Fidel Castro’s Communist regime. U.S. companies can sell farm and health care products under an exception passed during the Clinton administration. A soybean shipment left the Alabama state docks for Cuba in March 2003, which was the first shipment from Mobile to the island in four decades.
An Alabama state docks official said late last year that the Mobile area could gain $2 billion in annual trade and 40,000 jobs if the United States ends its embargo.