Updated:
Original:

Senator Franken heads to Cuba with mind on Minnesota's economy

Author:

Cuba is alive with Minnesotans these days, with Senator Al Franken the latest to head to the island nation on a diplomatic trip.

Franken and three fellow Democrats in the U.S Senate will meet with Cuban officials and business owners this weekend to discuss ways in which America can build relations with its Caribbean neighbor, according to a news release.

This comes after the Obama administration's recent move to thaw the frosty relationship between the two countries.

Franken's visit to Cuba follows that of his fellow Minnesota senator, Democrat Amy Klobuchar, who has been a vocal advocate of open trade with the country. She toured there in February and was apparently treated as something of a "mini-celebrity."

More recently, the Minnesota Orchestra became the first American musical ensemble to visit the country in nearly two decades. They played two sold-out concerts before heading back home last weekend.

Franken will be joined by other high-profile lawmakers to further explore trade and tourism opportunities between Cuba and the United States, with the hope that Minnesota's economy might benefit from the new relationship.

"Expanding trade opportunities with Cuba could be of enormous benefit to many Minnesota industries, including our medical technology industry, agricultural producers, and our energy sector," Franken said. "I look forward to exploring ways that we can build relations with Cuba."

Next Up

Mohamed Noor

Ex-Minneapolis cop Noor resentenced to 57 months in prison

Justine Ruszczyk Damond's fiancé said he forgives Noor.

Anthony Edwards

Anthony Edwards was right: he is Houdini and his bag of tricks is incredible

Edwards put the entire league on notice with his season-opening performance.

Bob Fletcher

New 'public service' charter school backed by Ramsey Co. Sheriff to open

Efforts to open the school were spearheaded in part by Ramsey County Sheriff Bob Fletcher.

covid-19 testing site sign

Minnesota to offer free COVID rapid testing at 9 more sites

Three new rapid testing sites opened in Minnesota this week.

5625574757_b30f4efb7e_k

Elvis Costello cancels Mystic Lake show, will play vax-requiring First Ave instead

Those who bought tickets to Mystic Lake will be refunded, and need to buy new tickets.

onions

23 Minnesotans infected with salmonella linked to onions

Four of Minnesota residents were hospitalized. None have died.

Anthony Edwards

Timberwolves smash Rockets in season opener

The Timberwolves showed they have plenty of firepower in a victory over Houston.

Knuth - Nezhad - side by side

Frey challengers Knuth, Nezhad agree to rank each other 2nd

They're urging supporters to do the same on Nov. 2.

Jerome Horton - Sherburne Co. Jail - CROP

Charges: Man lied to buy gun later used by St. Paul mass shooting suspect

He's accused of making false statements during the purchase of a firearm.

Screen Shot 2021-06-04 at 6.30.24 AM

BCA releases investigative file in Winston Smith's shooting death

The file contains 1,000 pages of documents, hundreds of photos and dozens of audio files.

Related

Why are Minnesota officials heading to Cuba?

Cuba has 11 million residents – all of which are potential customers for Minnesota businesses.