May 30, 2024

OFAC amends CACR to promote internet freedom and private sector businesses in Cuba

On May 28, 2024, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control amended the Cuban Assets Control Regulations (“CACR” or “Regulations”), 31 CFR part 515, in order to implement a policy that increases support for the Cuban people, which was announced by the Biden-Harris Administration on May 16, 2022.  According to OFAC, the amendments update and clarify authorizations that promote internet freedom, support private sector entrepreneurs, and improve access to certain financial services for the Cuban people.  More specifically, the amendments make the following changes to the CACR:

  • Provide examples of authorized internet-based services that U.S. persons can provide in Cuba, and expand the list of authorized services;
  • Authorize the export or reexport of Cuban-origin software and mobile applications from the United States to third countries;
  • Introduce the term “independent private sector entrepreneur” to describe Cuba’s non-state sector, a group that the amendments are intended to benefit;
  • Enable Cuban nationals who are “independent private sector entrepreneurs” to open, maintain and remotely use U.S. bank accounts; and
  • Reinstate the authorization of “U-turn” transactions – fund transfers that originate and terminate outside of the United States where neither party to the transaction is under U.S. jurisdiction – to enable the Cuban people to engage in remittance and payment transactions that are authorized by the CACR.


On the same day, OFAC also issued new Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs 1174-1179) to further clarify the new provisions and definitions in the CACR, as amended.  OFAC also amended eight FAQs (FAQs 745, 757, 770, 748, 769, 785, 736, and 732) to reflect the new authorizations in the regulatory amendment.

U.S. Department of Treasury Press Release | Federal Register – Final Rule | FAQs 1174 – 1170 | Amended FAQs