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Cuba Expert Series - Interview with Dr. Teo Babun

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

Rob Sequin | Havana Journal This is our first interview for our new Cuba Expert Series that will feature newsmakers, professionals, industry leaders, authors and other Cuba experts who will offer their insight and share their experiences with our Havana Journal audience. As a prelude to this new Series,… Read More

The Cuban economy - This time it’s different - opinion

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

Rob Sequin | Havana Journal Even the casual Cuba watcher knows “this time it’s different” in Cuba. For several months now Raul Castro has been leading the charge for MAJOR economic reforms in Cuba. And, so far, Fidel Castro has not tried to sabotage Raul’s efforts. Fidel is making… Read More

South Africa forgives $140million of Cuban debt, offers more credit

Posted in Cuba Business > Cuba-World Trade

Rob Sequin | Havana Journal I am always amazed that countries from all over the world give everything to Cuba for free or on credit which is rarely paid back. Cuba always plays the victim card because of the big bad US Embargo. Cuba claims it can’t buy merchandise or pay its debts because of the… Read More

Real Estate in Cuba - Still no “groundbreaking” events

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

Rob Sequin | Havana Journal Over promise and under deliver should be the slogan of Leisure Canada. Perhaps this phrase could serve as a warning to other Cuban real estate developers looking to start projects in a timely manner on Cuban land. Of course the Cuban government doesn’t do many things… Read More

Pedro Alvarez removed from Cuban Chamber of Commerce

Posted in Cuba Business > Cuba-World Trade

Rob Sequin | Havana Journal Pedro Alvarez, former President of the purchasing agency Alimport who then moved (or was moved) to the Cuban Chamber of Commerce is under investigation for alleged corruption, according to a report at Diario de Cuba. Alvarez was removed from the Chamber a few months ago and… Read More

China to invest $6B in Cienfuegos Cuba oil refinery

Posted in Cuba Business > Cuba-World Trade

Esteban Israel | Reuters A unit of China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC) is set to begin in 2011 a $6-billion expansion project at Cuba’s Cienfuegos refinery in one of the biggest investments ever on the communist-led island, a source close to the project said Monday. The blockbuster deal will be… Read More

Economic transition in Cuba. Will Obama ease US travel restrictions?

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

Rob Sequin | Havana Journal Anyone with a casual interest in Cuba knows by now that a serious economic transition has begun in Cuba under the direction of Raul Castro. Juan Tamayo of the Miami Herald sums the Cuban economic reforms this way… Cuba’s food rationing card will be eliminated.… Read More

Economic transition in Cuba on the agenda for Miami conference

Posted in Cuba Business > Cuba-World Trade

Rob Sequin | Havana Journal The 2010 Caribbean/Central America Action conference will be held at the Intercontinental Hotel in Miami from December 1 through 3. This is the only event that focuses on the economies of the Caribbean and Central America or the “third border” with the United… Read More

Cuba newsletter sold to investors in Miami

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

Rob Sequin | Havana Journal According to the article, Miami Investors buy Cuba News, posted at CubaStandard.com recently, Antony Zamora and Fernando Donayre have purchased the subscription only Cuba News newsletter. Larry Luxner is expected to stay on as editor through 2011. Cuba News has been a friend… Read More

Cuban coffee harvest lowest in history of Cuba

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

Will Weissert from AP is reporting that Cuba had its worst coffee harvest in history in 2009 with production yielding only 5,500 tons. Pretty sad considering how much farm land there is in Cuba. Let’s not forget that the Communist government produced the lowest sugar harvest since 1905 last year.… Read More

Private taxis in Havana increase 55x over state run taxis

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

Rob Sequin | Havana Journal According to the Minister of Transport Cesar Arocha, private Cuban taxis have increased their productivity by 55 times. Income spiked to 17,000 pesos ($566) from 529 pesos ($17) Taxi drivers were allowed to lease their cars from the state for private use, the same principle… Read More

Cuba to cut back state control of workers and allow for more self employment

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

Rob Sequin | Havana Journal Are there two Cubas? There certainly appears to be two Cuban leaders with two different views of Cuba. Raul Castro sees a Cuba that is in serious trouble. So much so that he announced that 500,000 workers will be laid off and many of them given the opportunity to work for… Read More

Cuba to allow 99 year land lease to attract foreign investment

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

By WILL WEISSERT | Associated Press Cuba has begun allowing foreign investors to lease government land for up to 99 years, a step toward a future that could be filled with golf courses ringed by luxury villas, beachfront timeshares and vacation homes for well-heeled tourists. But while overseas developers… Read More

Max Marambio and Rio Zaza - another business opportunity in Cuba closed

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

The Economist Here’s an interesting story about doing business in Cuba. It’s atypical that a businessman actually made money in Cuba. What is typical is that his business has been shut down by the Cuban government. For anyone thinking about doing ANY business in Cuba… don’t bother.… Read More

The key to Cuban commerce - land ownership and real estate law in Cuba

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

Dan Skinner | CubaDomainsForSale.com For me, as one who has developed a love for the Cuban people and countryside since the 1950s, and who appreciates their plight, I have some personal concerns about the realistic future of Cuban business. At the root of all commercial growth is a clearly defined and… Read More

Letter to Committee on Foreign Affairs from US Chamber of Commerce

Posted in Cuba Business > Cuba-US Trade

R. Bruce Josten Executive Vice President Government Affairs 1615 H Street, N.W. Washington, D.C. 20062-2000 202/463-5310 Dear Chairman Berman and Ranking Member Ros-Lehtinen: The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the world’s largest business federation representing the interests of more than three million… Read More

Is it for real now? Cuba to allow sale of houses to foreigners

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

Nacho AFP  and other agencies are reporting that Cuba is to build golf courses with foreign investors and allow the sale of houses in those secluded compounds to foreigners. Is this for real now? Remember the Carbonera Club? It was supposed to open in 2011. Some hope Raul will offer more that just… Read More

Empowering the Cuban people through technology - report

Posted in Cuba Business > Cuba-US Trade

Press Release The Cuba Study Group today published a whitepaper in collaboration with the Americas Society/Council of the Americas and the Latin America Initiative at the Brookings Institution entitled “Empowering the Cuban People Through Technology: Recommendations for Private and Public Sector… Read More

How to do business in Cuba

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

Rob Sequin | Havana Journal Cuba’s centrally controlled and secret economy is throwing off signs that it cannot sustain its economy for much longer. As we have seen, many countries around the world have suffered crippling debt crises so Cuba, a country that chooses not to participate in the World… Read More

FIHAV International Business Fair in Havana Cuba information page

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

Rob Sequin | Havana Journal We covered FIHAV 2009. Here is the translated text from the invitation to the International Fair of Havana. Dear Businessman,   The Organizing Committee of the International Fair of Havana has the pleasure to invite you to participate in its 27th edition that will take… Read More

Cuba related business organizations and Cuba trade information

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

Rob Sequin | Havana Journal We have compiled a list of Cuba business and trade related organizations in Cuba and in the United States. Any business with plans for doing business in Cuba should get to know people in these organizations. There are many obstacles to success on the US side and of course… Read More

Port of Houston gets permission for shipping containers to Cuba

Posted in Cuba Business > Cuba-US Trade

Julian Aguila | Texas Tribune Texas is poised to become the nation’s leading trade partner with communist Cuba after the Port of Houston Authority gained permission for its container vessels to sail to the island nation. Trade experts are confident that Texas will be now able to carve out for itself… Read More

Cuba to allow for small private retail barbers and hair salons

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

By Marc Frank | Reuters Communist Cuba is turning over hundreds of state-run barber shops and beauty salons to employees across the country in what appears to be the start of a long-expected revamping of state retail services by President Raul Castro. The measure marks the first time state-run, retail-level… Read More

Cuba to close Ministry of Sugar, start new sugar corporation

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

Rob Sequin | Havana Journal Speculation has it that the Ministry of Sugar (MINAZ) will be closed in the near future and be replaced by a centrally controlled, state run corporation according to sources talking with Reuters. The sugar industry was a big source of revenue for Cuba until 1992. This is the… Read More

US House one vote away from easing ag sales and travel to Cuba

Posted in Cuba Business > Cuba-US Trade

By .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | Bloomberg The U.S. House of Representatives may pass a bill next month that would cut restrictions on agricultural exports to Cuba and lift a ban on travel to the island, the measure’s sponsor said. Congressman Collin Peterson, chairman… Read More

Cuba to close 100 farms, importing 80% of food now

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

Rob Sequin | Havana Journal State run newspaper Granma reported that Cuba will close at least one hundred “inefficient” government run farms and move approximately 40,000 government workers to other jobs. Agriculture Minister Ulises Rosales made the announcement at a meeting of the National… Read More

US House hearing on agricultural sales to Cuba - video

Posted in Cuba Business > Cuba-US Trade

John McAuliff | Fund for Reconciliation and Development The US House of Representatives Agriculture Committee is having a hearing regarding US food sales to Cuba. Thursday, March 11th - 1:00 p.m. 1300 Longworth House Office Building Washington, DC Full Committee on Agriculture - Public Hearing RE: To… Read More

Cuba to lease some retail businesses in Capitalism experiment

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

By Marc Frank | Reuters Cuba nationalized all retail business in 1968, down to the shoe-shine shops, but in an attempt to stimulate the stagnant economy and reduce bureaucracy, it is experimenting with giving some of it back in a form of legal private enterprise. By leasing some retail services to state… Read More

Russia to set up joint venture in Cuba for electric plant in Mariel

Posted in Cuba Business > Cuba-World Trade

Rob Sequin | Havana Journal The Russian news agency Itar-Tass is reporting that a Russian electricity company, RAO UES, will begin business operations in Cuba. The Russian company will form a joint venture with Cuban government owned Union Electrica in order to upgrade and expand the Maximo Gomez Thermal… Read More

Cuba offering payment plan to foreign business suppliers on debts owed

Posted in Cuba Business > Cuba-World Trade

See my comments in bold By Marc Frank | Reuters Cuba is offering foreign businesses 2 percent annual interest over five years as part of a plan to repay hundreds of millions of dollars in bank accounts frozen by the cash-strapped government, diplomatic and business sources said this week. The government… Read More

*Havana Journal to soon require comments to be from members only

Posted in Cuba Business > Cuba-US Trade

Rob Sequin | Havana Journal The Havana Journal has seen a jump in traffic and membership registrations in the last several months. The site gets well over 2000 unique visitors per day now. With that popularity comes comment spam, just a fact of life on the Internet. If you have left a comment on an article… Read More

State of Cuban economy

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

By PAUL HAVEN | The Associated Press Cuba has slashed food and agriculture imports from the United States - its largest food supplier despite decades of sour relations - as the communist government tightens its belt in the face of a crippling economic malaise. Imports fell 26 percent in 2009 to $528… Read More

Cuba opening peso restaurants and stores to phase out CUC currency

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

Mark Frank | Reuters Retail outlets selling everything in Cuban pesos are popping up in Santiago de Cuba in what may be the Cuban government’s first steps toward phasing out its unpopular two-currency system. The opening of the establishments mark a reversal of two decades of national policy that… Read More

Roman Catholic Church warns about economic collapse in Cuba

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

Agence France-Presse The Roman Catholic Church warned Sunday that Cuba is on the verge of an economic collapse that can only be prevented if President Raul Castro institutes sweeping economic and social reforms. “The economic situation in Cuba has turned rather complicated with signs that it is… Read More

Havana city railroad gets repairs

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

BY LOURDES PÉREZ NAVARRO | Granma Rail workers, with the skill of knowing where to place their feet after constant work on the railroads, wedged the rail with a thick piece of timber and removed the deteriorated rail using a lever and a sledgehammer. They then changed it for a new one. They were encouraged… Read More

Leisure Canada seeks financing for Cuba hotel projects… again

Posted in Cuba Business > Cuba-Canada Trade

Leisure Canada Inc. (TSX VENTURE:LCN) announced today that it has retained Dundee Securities Corporation (“Dundee Securities”) as its exclusive financial advisor as it implements plans to construct three 5-star resort hotel and vacation complexes in Cuba. Dundee Securities will advise on… Read More

Port of Houston begins weekly shipments of cargo to Cuba

Posted in Cuba Business > Cuba-US Trade

Jenalia Moreno | Chron.com For the first time in nearly half a century, a shipping line will provide weekly transport from Houston’s docks to Cuba. Local officials view this as the beginning of increased exports to a Latin American nation that still faces a partial trade embargo with the U.S. “What… Read More

Clarinbridge files for OFAC license to buy Cuban seized US property claims

Posted in Cuba Business > Business In Cuba

Juan O. Tamayo | The Miami Herald A group of foreign investors is seeking a U.S. government license to buy claims against Cuba, for American-owned properties seized in the 1960s, then swap them with Havana in a debt-for-equity exchange. The settlement would resolve one of the oldest U.S.-Cuba disputes… Read More

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