One has to wonder why this British investment firm thought their experience would be any different from others when they lent money to a corrupt dictatorship with a decades-long history of not paying its debts. Now they want the UK High Court to help them out of the jam their bad and extremely stupid decision got them into.
I unfortunately have some bad news for them: As long as the EU and others continue running cover for the socialist regime in Cuba, the Castro dictatorship is not going to pay them back a single penny, regardless of what the court may rule.
Investment firm CRF I Ltd. sued Cuba in a London court in an attempt to force the island’s communist government to repay commercial debt that it defaulted on more than three decades ago.
CRF, which has held Cuban debt for more than a decade, said the claim was filed in U.K. High Court against the government and state-owned Banco Nacional de Cuba. It stems from credits two European banks extended to the Cuban bank in 1982 and 1984, according to a copy of the claim seen by Bloomberg. CRF, which holds the debts in its portfolio, is seeking principal and accrued interest.
The suit comes after numerous efforts to settle outstanding commercial debt obligations, which the Cuban government stopped making interest payments on in the mid 1980s, CRF said. The Cuban government in 2015 reached an agreement with some members of the Paris Club of foreign lenders in which it agreed to repay $2.6 billion of the $11.1 billion it owed in principal an accumulated interest on debt with other governments.
CRF formed the so-called London Club of creditors shortly thereafter and sought to reach a similar deal. Seven years of attempts to reach a settlement were ignored or rebuffed by the Cuban government, CRF said in its statement. The London Club made an offer as recently as 2018 that included a substantial haircut. The firm hired law firm Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP to represent it in the claim.
Around the time Cuba stopped making interest payments, former Cuban dictator Fidel Castro, who died in 2016, referred to debt as a “cancer” that “imperialism has created.” Castro’s brother Raul oversaw a rapprochement with U.S. President Barack Obama in late 2014 that was seen as Cuba’s chance to normalize commercial relations.
As my late father would have said: Eso les pasa por comemierda.