WOLA: Advocacy for Human Rights in the Americas

A Compounding Crisis: Domestic Shortcomings, U.S. policies, and the Impact on Everyday Cubans

10:00 AM Friday, 9 September 2022

(AP Photo/Ismael Francisco)

Join the Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA) and the Center for Democracy in the Americas (CDA) for a discussion on the current crisis in Cuba

Although Cuba’s government has sought to spur economic growth in recent years by shrinking the state sector, encouraging greater foreign investment, and expanding the private sector, the sluggish implementation and counterproductive nature of these measures and the ongoing crisis has enacted a deep toll on the quality of life of the Cuban people. Some of the economic measures aimed at the long-term improvement of the Cuban economy have had a dire impact on the ability of Cuban families to survive. In practice, the crisis has meant that Cubans are forced to endure hours-long energy blackouts and stagnated incomes, extreme inflation, and a lack of basic goods and services. The goods that are available on the shelves are often more expensive or in hard-to-obtain currencies such as the U.S. dollar. Lower-income families and Afro-Cubans bear the brunt of this as not all have equal access to foreign currency from abroad. Remittances are one of the top sources for Cuba’s hard currency and play a major role in the ability of many Cuban families and the private sector to survive the ongoing economic crisis on the island. As the Biden administration continues to hold back specifics on how its recent measures will successfully be implemented, Cuban-Americans and others continue to struggle to support their loved ones on the island. 

Cuba’s economic crisis—defined by extreme inflation, a shrinking GDP, the accumulation of social debts, goods shortages, high external dependency, and weak economic growth—leaves many questions about the island’s economic development and its future overall.

On Friday, September 9, 2022 at 10:00 a.m. EST, join the Center for Democracy in the Americas (CDA) and the Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA) for a discussion with experts on the current state of Cuba’s crisis, how it differs from the special period in the 90s, and the island’s future overall. A Compounding Crisis: Domestic Shortcomings, U.S. policies, and the Impact on Everyday Cubans will explore weaknesses within Cuba’s economic model, recently announced economic reforms, the role of remittances and the Cuban diaspora, and how U.S. sanctions disproportionately impact Cuban families and the private sector while having relatively unchanged levels of impact on the state economy.


Event Details: 

Friday, September 9, 2022

 10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. EST


Oscar Fernández

Cuban Economist and Entrepreneur

Anamary Maqueira

Doctoral Candidate in Economics at 

the University of Massachusetts, Amherst

Denisse Delgado

Doctoral Candidate in Public Policy 

at the University of Massachusetts, Boston 


Ricardo Torres

Research Fellow at the Center for Latin American 

and Latino Studies at American University

This event will be livestreamed via WOLA’s YouTube page.