“We propose to remove Cuba from the Exclusion List based on the State Department Letter announcing certain changes to its policy guidance and requesting that the Commission remove Cuba from the Exclusion List. We seek comment on this proposal, and, in doing so, we follow the procedures regularly used to remove a country from the Exclusion List.”
The above quote is from an FCC solicitation for comment with respect to International Bureau Docket No. 95-118, and you can file this one under “It is about F%^&ing time.” Almost everyone knows that for the last 55 years the policy of the United States towards Cuba has been hostile. Some would say beyond reason. Unless you have family or friends there, you may not know that that the restrictive trade policies of the U.S. towards Cuba extend to simple telephone communications. Fortunately, that may be changing soon. Cuba, uniquely, almost thirty years after the end of the cold war, remains on a list of countries that require special exemption from the the FCC to communicate with legally. Russia? Not on the list. North Korea? Not on the list. Iran? Iraq? Syria? Libya? Not on the list. This “special” treatment means that while the tariff for most international calls is somewhere in the $.02-.10 range, calls to Cuba typically cost an order of magnitude more. Ironically, communications from the U.S. with Cuba have been characterized by a lack of competition and the resulting profiteering that one might expect. Once more, we salute the efforts of the current FCC administration to act in the interests of the consumer, and to support normalization of trade with one of our closest neighbors. If you are in a position to support this policy change, please join us in doing so.
Read the FCC Solicitation for Comment here:
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