Key figure in evolving U.S.-Cuba business relationship discusses potential and challenges

U.S.-Cuba relations expert Scott Gilbert, an attorney who received global prominence after securing the release from a Cuban jail of American aid worker Alan Gross, reflects in an interview with Fox News Latino on the historic visit to Havana by President Barack Obama.

Gilbert, who has a key role in building bridges between the U.S. and Cuba as it restores relations, says remarkable barriers are being broken in the Cuban economy and society, but candidly acknowledges that the country is going through growing pains in this new chapter of its relationship with its long-time northern adversary.

“President [Raul] Castro is one of the original members of the revolution,” Gilbert said, noting that in 2018, when Castro, 84, said he planned to step down, Cuba will likely see “a shift in government from that generation to a younger generation.”

For the trade and economic changes between the U.S. and Cuba to gain traction, the embargo must be lifted, Gilbert said. Short of that, however, the U.S. needs to take further steps to ease regulations and bureaucratic, complicated process that still exists for companies wanting to do business there. Cuba also needs to be more flexible, he said.

For the full interview, check out the video.