HAVANA, January 12. While Cuba is experiencing economic chaos, more than 130 new micro, small and medium-sized businesses (MSMEs) have recently been approved,a figure that is closer to 10 thousand in its entirety since its legalization in 2021.
As announced by the Cuban Ministry of Economy and Planning (MEP), of these 133 companies, 128 are private and five are state-owned, focused, above all, on gastronomic activities, production of construction materials, maintenance and repair of vehicles. automotive and computer programming activities.
Within the reforms undertaken by the Government to try to boost the economy, MSMEs embarked on a path full of inconsistencies since their emergence in 2021. Although some economists are in favor of these companies being great drivers of the economy, on the other hand, many specialists allege that they are responsible for high inflation and that the high prices of their products have increased social differences in the country.
According to official figures, in total, 19.6% of MSMEs are dedicated to manufacturing activities and 12% to the production of food and beverages, and these employ around 225,000 Cubans, with 189,000 new jobs.
Alejandro Gil Fernández, head of the MEP, has made it clear that these companies have competitive advantages over state companies in the current Cuban context.
In fact, according to the minister, they can access the exchange market, import and export goods and services, set their prices and respond more quickly to consumer demand. What does not happen with state companies, is exposed regulations and restrictions that limit their management capacity and efficiency.
The government itself has recognized that MSMEs are the only ones that offer quality and variety products. Faced with such a scenario, state companies have partnered with them to be able to obtain foreign currency and inputs that they need to sustain their production.
The idea will be to “order” this scenario and create more equitable conditions for all economic actors, Gil has highlighted in government meetings at the end of 2023.