US-based money transfer company Western Union will close its offices in Cuba following new sanctions from Washington which prevent it from working with Fincimex, a financial company run by the island’s military, Havana said yesterday.
The firm will close its “407 agencies located throughout the country because of these brutal provisions”, Fincimex said in a statement posted on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ website.
It added that the sanctions, which came “in the midst of the pandemic, underscore the cynicism, contempt for the Cuban people and opportunism of the US Government”.
The measures, which were announced last Friday, are due to go into effect on November 27.
Western Union told AFP it hoped to “continue to provide essential money transfer services to customers” and that it was “working to adapt to new rules and regulations concerning Cuba”, adding that it would make an announcement on the matter soon.
In the meantime, it said, money transfers would “remain operational” and American customers would be able to send money “directly to family members in Cuba from our branches or via the Internet… so that it goes to our more than 400 agencies” across the island.
Many Cubans receive valuable daily support in the form of remittances — money sent from abroad to relatives back home.