U.S. Blockade of Cuba Hits Germany Again


German Drugstore Chain Rossmann Rejects Extraterritoriality of U.S. Blockade against Cuba
Following a recent decision by PayPal Europe to suspend some accounts of several traders selling Cuban products in Germany, Rossmann, the No. 3 German drugstore chain, has announced that it decided to stop using this online payment service provider.
Cuba-Puerto Rico Normal Communication Tripped

According to Granma newspaper, Rossmann said on its official website that there is no justification whatsoever to apply in Germany regulations ofthe U.S. economic blockade against Cuba.

This initiative joins a recent decision by several German companies selling Cuban products online to sue PayPal Europe, a Luxembourg-based subsidiary of eBay Corp.

Paypal demanded the German firm Rum & Co to withdraw the Habanos cigars, rum and other products from Cuba. Another one of these companies, the Munich-based DTS & W GmbH, which operates online wholesaler www.bardealer.de, complained that PayPal wouldn’t allow it to sell Cuban rum. “In no way do we want to refrain from offering delicious Cuban rum to
our clients,” the bardealer homepage says. “Therefore, we have (temporarily?) deactivated our PayPal payment service.”

PayPal justified the suspension to DTS & W and other merchants with U.S. blockade laws against Cuba, saying that as a subsidiary of a U.S. company it is obligated to respect U.S. laws.

However, in the 1990s, the European Union instituted a law that puts penalties on companies that apply U.S. blockade laws in Europe.

Specialists don’t believe PayPal’s extraterritorial application of U.S. laws would stand up within the European Union region.

Rossmann operates 2,390 health and beauty retail shops in six European countries with approximately 30,000 employees and group sales amounting to EUR 4.63 billion in 2010. It has a total of five foreign subsidiaries.



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