Frustration lingers for businesses after historic deals on Cuba and Iran

Global Business

Iran Airbus The pilot of Iran Air’s new Airbus plane waves a national flag after landing at Mehrabad airport, in Tehran, Iran, Thursday, Jan. 12, 2017. The first of 100 Airbus planes that Iran is expected to receive after its historic nuclear deal with world powers ended some sanctions landed on Thursday in the capital, Tehran. (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi)

The Iran Nuclear Deal and the historic thaw in diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba are two pillars of Obama administration’s legacy. However, when it comes to global companies, those diplomatic achievements have not always driven demand.

CGTN Jessica Stone reports.

Frustration lingers for businesses after historic deals on Cuba and Iran

Frustration lingers for businesses after historic deals on Cuba and Iran

The Iran Nuclear Deal and the historic thaw in diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba are two pillars of Obama administration’s legacy. However, when it comes to global companies, those diplomatic achievements have not always driven demand. CGTN's Jessica Stone reports.

Just days ahead of the first anniversary of implementing the Iran nuclear deal, Iran received its first post-sanctions aircraft.

The Iran nuclear deal carved out sanctions exemptions as part of a diplomatic trade-off: the slowing of Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for the lifting of international economic sanctions on Tehran.

But one year later, global corporations who use American dollars are still hesitant to do business in Iran. U.S. sanctions still apply to those transactions.

“I think what we will see from the U.S. business community is an enormous amount of frustration,” Wynn Segall from Akin, Gump, Strauss Hauer & Feld Law Firm, said.

That was a year ago, and Wynn Segall, an attorney advising U.S. companies on business in Iran, says that frustration still persists.

Two years after Obama normalized relations between the U.S. and Cuba, the first U.S.-Cuba joint venture is already approved and underway.

Roswell Park Cancer Institute has partnered with the Center of Molecular Immunology to test a Cuban medical therapy on Americans with cancer.

According to the U.S. Cuba Trade & Economic Council, in the first two years since the announcement of normalization, Cuba gained up to $12 billion in economic impact.

But in the same period, the Council said U.S.-based companies earned $720 million dollars, almost all of it travel-related.

The reality is while there are 35 U.S. companies now doing business in Cuba, hardly any are exporting products.

Nevertheless, the most prominent trade deal of the Obama administration was the Trans-Pacific Partnership. The agreement attracted much interest from the region and would have had an enormous impact on the auto and dairy industries. But the U.S. Congress never approved it.


David Nelson talks about Obama’s trade deal legacies

For more Obama’s trade deal legacy and his diplomatic normalization with Iran and Cuba, CGTN’s Rachelle Akuffo spoke to Chief Strategist David Nelson of Belpointe, an investment strategy firm.