Two containers of artisanal charcoal from Cuba aboard a Crowley container vessel marked the first commercial shipment from a Cuban cooperative to a private US business for more than 50 years.
Port Everglades in Florida handled the first such exports of Cuban goods to the US since the establishment of the US-Cuba trade embargo.
The shipment follows 15 years of Crowley’s liner and logistics teams operating within the framework of regulations of both the US and Cuban governments to transport US exports to the island.
In 2001, the shipping line became the first US carrier to re-enter Cuba in nearly 40 years launching a regular service to Cuba, currently operating from Port Everglades.
According to a Crowley statement, the opportunity to participate in the trade was made possible by the Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act of 2000, and cooperation of the Cuban government.
The act authorised the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) to license the transport of agricultural commodities, medicine, medical devices or other products directly from the US to Cuba.
“In addition to transporting frozen poultry and a variety of other foodstuffs to the island, Crowley has safely and reliably shipped equipment for major events and projects, such as sporting events and concerts,” the carrier noted in a statement.