Ever since it was created by John S. Pemberton in 1886, Coke has been the favorite among the natives of America. And starting in the early 1900s, it slowly grew into a worldwide marvel.
In present day, there are two places where you still can’t buy or purchase Coke: Cuba and North Korea. But, has that always been the case? Nope!
When Coca-Cola opened its bottling plants in Cuba in 1906, it operated for quite a while but pulled out from the system in 1962 due to an official ban on trade, not long after Fidel Castro took over the country.
Fidel Castro conducted an armed revolt known as the Cuban Revolution which resulted in the ousting of President Batista. After Castro took over, he started the nationalization program. The government nationalized all the assets owned by foreign nations particularly American companies on August 6, 1960.
Coca-Cola moved out of Cuba in the early 1960s and has never returned. Currently, the United States holds a financial, economic, and commercial embargo against the Republic of Cuba. Therefore, no American firm including Coca-Cola is allowed to trade with Cuba.
North Koreans however haven’t been able to buy Coke either since 1950, because of the Korean breakout war that happened the same year.
Imperial Japan annexed Korea in 1910, and after the Second World War, it was split into two states: South Korea was occupied by the US while North Korea by the Soviet Union. The US imposed trade sanctions on North Korea during the 1950s, and they tightened the sanctions after the North Koreans bombed South Korea in the 1980s.
Trade between North Korea and the United States was restricted from 1950 to 2008 under the 1917 trade with the Enemy Act. Currently, various states have imposed sanctions on North Korea because of their nuclear program. North Korea has been a Coca-Cola free state since the 1950s.
Coca-Cola doesn’t want to involve itself in politics because of its peculiar brand it has built over the past 125 years.
The only thing that has ever stopped Coca-Cola from being sold is politics getting in the way of business, with conflicts like World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War effectively ceasing production in some countries (trade embargoes haven’t helped).
Notwithstanding political circumstances, Coca-Cola has managed to sell its merchandise almost everywhere.