The World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) has been working with the League, as well as credit unions to gauge the opportunities credit unions have as relations normalize between Cuba and the U.S. WOCCU posted a story this week that looked at the October trip to Havana made by WOCCU, the LSCU, CUNA, and credit unions. The story also has interviews with two Florida credit unions, Dade County Federal Credit Union and Space Coast Credit Union.
George Joseph, CEO of Dade County FCU, says he wants his credit union to be a fast follower, if financial cooperatives do open up in Cuba, “We’re preparing for what we believe will be an emergence of Cuban credit unions and we don’t want to be left in the dark.” Doug Samuels, CEO at Space Coast CU, says his older members still have resentment toward the Cuban government but younger members are more open to normal relations, “The ones who lived through the revolution may still be negative, but their kids don’t feel that way. If the current barriers between the U.S. and Cuba are removed, I believe they will interact naturally.”
LSCU & Affiliates President/CEO Patrick La Pine, who made the trip in October, says credit unions can offer Cuban citizens services they need in a cooperative model, “From a partnership standpoint, there are a lot of opportunities in different areas of support for Cuban credit unions in lending, management and finance.”