The U.S. and Cuba just restored diplomatic relations. Here are 9 must-know numbers
The U.S. and Cuba announced Wednesday a historic breakthrough in which full, diplomatic relations have been restored. The U.S. will open an embassy in Havana as well. The news comes after Cuba released American Alan Gross, held captive for five years, earlier Wednesday.
“Today, the United States is taking historic steps to chart a new course in our relations with Cuba and to further engage and empower the Cuban people,” according to the White House in a statement.
Here are some of the most important numbers to know about the news today as well as about Cuba’s economy.
5: The numbers of years American contractor Gross was held captive in a Cuban prison. He worked for Development Alternatives which reportedly held a $6 million contract with the U.S. Agency for International Development. The country accused Gross of crimes related to bringing satellite phones and computer equipment to Cuba’s Jewish community.
12: The different types of travel restrictions to be eased as a result of the restored ties, including family visits and official visits as well as journalistic and education work, according to The New York Times. Tourism, however, will reportedly remain prohibited.
18: The months of “secret talks” that were hosted by Canada and which led to President Barack Obama to meet with Cuban President Raul Castro, according to The New York Times.
25: The percentage of Cuba’s economy that goes to exporting raw sugar. That’s followed by 15% refined petroleum, 14% nickel mattes, 14% rolled tobacco and 6.7% hard liquor, according to the Observatory of Economic Complexity, which is run by MIT. The top five export locations are China (30%), Spain (11%), Brazil (5.1%), Belgium-Luxembourg (5%) and Italy (3.2%).
50: The number of years that passed between the U.S. and Cuba before talking once more on Dec. 17.
68.23: The number of dollars in billions that Cuba’s GDP is worth, according to the World Bank. The country also has a population of 11.26 million.
264: The number of dollars in millions that the U.S. government has spent in Cuba through the U.S. Agency for International Development to aid democracy in Cuba, The New York Times reported.
400: The number of dollars that U.S. travelers can import from Cuba. That’s up from $100 previously, according to media reports.
2,000: The number of dollars that President Obama will allow to be sent to Cuban nationals every three months. That’s up from just $500.