NEW YORK — A small Miami company says the U.S. government has given it permission to lay the first optical communications fiber from the U.S. to Cuba. That could drastically cut the cost of calling the island nation and make the Internet more accessible to Cubans.

The Treasury Department could not immediately confirm that TeleCuba Communications Inc. has received approval. The Obama administration eased long-standing restrictions on telecom links to Cuba in April.

TeleCuba says its cable will be operating by the middle of 2011. It still needs final permission from the Cuban government to land the cable. Also, while the cable could make calling very cheap, the Cuban government will set rates, and could keep restrictions on Internet access as well.