Reaching Out

Mar 1, 2006

Opportunities offered by Cuba's vast consumer market are looking increasingly attractive for neighbors in the Caribbean.

A Cuban market teems with eager consumers.
Despite talk of regional and economic integration, the English-speaking Caribbean until recently had little to do with the biggest Caribbean island of all: Cuba.
But this aversion is lessening as Jamaica and Trinidad & Tobago deepen ties with the Castro regime, and as former British colonies from Belize to Guyana are lured by the promise of Cuban doctors in exchange for better relations.

Also strengthening links with Cuba is Haiti, where over 700 Cuban physicians are bringing health care to some of the most desperately poor people in the Western Hemisphere.

"We cannot afford to anger our big neighbor and benefactor, the United States," says Raymond Joseph, Haiti's ambassador in Washington. "But at the same time, we wonder whether the Cuban people should still be suffering for the sins of Mr. Castro."

Compared to Haiti, Cuba is a wealthy country. In fact, the Castro...

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