Sanctions - Cuba

The United States has long maintained sanctions against Cuba and which included a ban on vessels calling in US waters for 180 days after having traded to Cuba. Under the Obama Administration relations between Cuba and the US began to improve however and several amendments were made to the US Cuban Asset Control Regulations, though, crucially, not to the 180 day rule. Details of those previous amendments can be found in the Club News Items, most recently on 24 September 2015.

It was then announced in October 2016 that this prohibition has been amended so that a wider range of non-US vessels may now call at Cuba and then trade immediately to the US. It should be noted however that this amendment did not amount to a complete lifting of the ban and full details - including a helpful Client Alert produced by the Club’s US attorneys Freehill, Hogan & Mahar - can be found in the Club's News Item of 21 October 2016, including how to determine whether the carriage of a particular cargo to Cuba entitles the vessel to then trade immediately to the US.

NB: The link to the Commerce Control List in the News Item of 21 October 2016 mentioned above is no longer operational. The list can be found by clicking here.

In June 2017 President Trump declared that the previous policy relaxations would be "completely reversed". In practice however any repeal has been limited and the amendments to the 180 day ban remain in force. Full details - including a Freehill Client Alert and OFAC FAQs - can be found in the Club's News Item of 21 June 2017.

It should also be borne in mind that other provisions of US sanctions which remain in force against Cuba may mean that US insurers and reinsurers are unable to pay liabilities which involve Cuba or Cuban entities. Under the Rules the Club is unable to reimburse Members for sums which are unrecoverable from its reinsurers because of sanctions (for details please refer to the section headed "Club Cover" on our main sanctions webpage).

Important note

The information provided by the Club and in particular through its website is not and is not intended to be exhaustive. Every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of the information provided. However this cannot be guaranteed given that sanctions measures are subject to alteration by Governmental organisations at short notice. Further the information on this site is not, and should not be relied upon as, independent legal advice.

Members are strongly advised to undertake due diligence before fixing any business to or from a sanctioned country in order to ensure that neither the prospective cargo nor the parties to the planned venture are sanctioned. The Club is willing to assist Members where possible but they may nevertheless wish to take independent legal advice.