In a remarkable move the Cuban government eliminated the exit visa requirement. The Cuban exit visa has been in place for over 50 years (since 1961). Now, in order to leave the country, Cubans only need a passport and a visa for the destination country.
Unfortunately, there are still many individuals who will not be able to leave because their jobs are tied to the country’s “economic, social and technical, scientific development, or security and the protection of official information.” Individuals that fit this restriction are still prohibited from leaving the country. As a result many of the wealthier Cubans that could actually afford to travel will not get to leave due to this restriction based on their area of employment. Nevertheless it is still a step in the right direction.
This law might also encourage some Cubans who left illegally to return to their home country if they no longer have the fear of being trapped their. Experts are divided onto whether this measure will boost the economy. On one hand of course their may be an exodus of educated individuals. On the other hand this measure combined with other reforms such as private ownership of land will open the country up to more travel and tourism as well as commercial development.
There is a not very known law called the Cuban Adjustment Act that allows any Cuban that has been in the U.S. for more than a year to adjust his/her status to that of a permanent resident. This privilege is not granted to nationals of any other country! Immigration attorneys and authorities are speculating as to what extent the Cuban Adjustment Act candidates will increase in the upcoming years.