Cuba: The Race Is On
March 24, 2016•7 min
President Obama's trip to Cuba this week was historic — it's been more than 80 years since a U.S. president visited the nation — but was it productive? During a joint news conference between Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro, the U.S. president criticized Cuba's lack of human rights. "America believes in democracy. We believe that freedom of speech and freedom of assembly and freedom of religion are not just American values but are universal values," Obama said. But Castro brushed off the accusations. "We defend human rights," he said. "In our view, civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights are indivisible, interdependent and universal." Still, while some doors remain closed, economic ones are creaking open. And U.S. companies are racing to capitalize on the relatively untapped market on the island nation. Several CEOs of large American businesses like PayPal, Marriott and Airbnb joined the president in Cuba this week. Was the president's trip to Cuba more than a photo op? How will Cuba balance opening its economy while at the same time, maintaing political control? And, because you know you are asking, who can visit Cuba now? This week on Money Talking, host Charlie Herman talks about the race to get to Cuba with Cardiff Garcia U.S. Editor for the Alphaville blog at the Financial Times and Emily Parker, author of "Now I Know Who My Comrades Are: Voices from the Internet Underground."