On February 13, 2015, the U.S. State Department issued new regulations regarding goods and services eligible for export from Cuba to the United States. The new regulations open a new chapter in U.S.–Cuba trade relations that will support the rise of private economic activity on the island. For the first time in 50+ years, Cuban entrepreneurs in the nascent private sector will be able to sell products and services to American businesses. While important elements of the embargo remain intact, the decision to allow imports from Cuban entrepreneurs is another major departure from past policies of isolation and toward a new era of engagement and normalization. There is great potential for these changes to generate new markets for Cuba's self-employed workers and small business owners. The ultimate impact will depend on whether the Cuban government will allow Cuba's private sector to take advantage of the huge new market opening these policies create.

Learn more about the impact of the new regulations by reading the following articles:

AP/ABC News: "US allows imports of privately produced products from Cuba"
Politico: "U.S. cracks open door for some Cuban imports"
Miami Herald: "U.S. releases rules for imports from Cuba"
Reuters: "U.S. eases restrictions on imports from private Cubans"