HAVANA, Nov 7 Cuba approved 30 new foreign investment businesses this year in areas such as tourism, food production, industrial sectors and professional services, authorities of the Caribbean country announced today.
The general director of Foreign Investment of the Ministry of Foreign Trade, Carlos Luis Jorge, stated that this figure still does not correspond to the needs, potential, and aspirations of the Antillean nation, but it is a sign that confidence and interest in the Cuban market, while new actors and markets are incorporated.
When presenting the update of the island’s Portfolio of Opportunities during the VI Investment Forum that takes place in the context of the 39th Havana International Fair (Fihav), Jorge added that, in addition to the thirty projects already completed, there are three in the final approval phase, while another 45 are in advanced negotiations, which have an estimated amount of nine billion dollars.
The manager highlighted that in 2023, for the first time, a foreign investment deal was concluded in which the partner is a Cuban resident abroad, as a sign of the will for nationals living in other latitudes to have that opportunity, and said that this step can serve as a reference for more agreements of this type.
He added that, in total, the island currently has 334 foreign investment businesses in operation from more than 40 countries, 52 of them located in the Mariel Special Development Zone.
Regarding the Opportunities Portfolio, he specified that in 2023 it has 729 projects, 21 more than the previous year, which implies a total investment amount of 34,471 million dollars.
Jorge highlighted that of these initiatives, distributed geographically in all the provinces, 215 correspond to the food production sector, the one with the greatest representation, while there are 139 that were presented by local governments.
The proposals include 121 oil exploration projects and nine mining projects, in addition to others linked to commerce, professional services, tourism, construction, transportation and logistics.
He also maintained that in recent years the view on investment volumes has changed, so each portfolio has an increasingly diverse structure, which allows the entry of small and medium-sized companies.
He mentioned in this regard that they have 374 proposals of more than five million dollars, 115 between two and five million, 63 between one and two million, and 177 below those last figures.
The director pointed out that the Opportunities Portfolio is not a straitjacket, but fundamentally a promotional tool, reflecting the will to attract foreign investment, and does not constitute a closed scheme, so initiatives not included can also be added.