UPDATE: US - Cuba Energy Summit

A meeting between Cuban officials and US energy executives was moved to another hotel after the Sheraton Hotel in Mexico City, under pressure from the US government, asked the Cubans to leave.

Offshore staff

(US & GoM) - A meeting between Cuban officials and US energy executives was moved to another hotel after the Sheraton Hotel in Mexico City, under pressure from the US government.

Kirby Jones, president of the US - Cuba Trade Association, said the US government called Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc. and pressured the chain to ask the Cubans to leave, arguing that the US company was violating a 45-year-old US trade embargo against Cuba.

Valero Energy Corp., the Louisiana Department of Economic Development, and the Texas Port of Corpus Christi took part in the summit.

The Associated Press (AP) reported that a spokeswoman for the US Embassy in Mexico City, could not confirm that the US government pressured Starwood.

Sheraton Hotel officials in Mexico City declined to comment to the AP, as did the Mexican government.

The meeting resumed Saturday at the Colon Mission Reforma Hotel.

During the meeting Friday, Cuban officials announced plans to double their drilling capacity and explore for oil in the waters off the island.

They also urged US corporations to lobby against the US trade embargo and invest in the nation's energy sector.

02/04/06

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