Cuba to Relaunch Foreign Exchange Market, Including US Dollar

Cuba to Relaunch Foreign Exchange Market, Including US Dollar

HAVANA, July 23th Cuba will relaunch the foreign exchange market for the population and international travelers, including the U.S. dollar, but at a higher rate than the official one established on Thursday

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economy and Planning Alejandro Gil told members of the Cuban Parliament that the measure is adopted in view of the signs of economic recovery, considered irreversible so that the country is in a position to implement the purchase and sale of foreign currency with an “economically based exchange rate.”

The details of its implementation of the measure are still being discussed, he said but made clear that the market will work with all currencies, including U.S. dollars in cash, even though the conditions for which it ceased to be accepted in Cuba remain, such as the limitations on its use imposed by the U.S. economic blockade.

Gil added that the informal market operates essentially with dollars, euros, and freely convertible currencies, at prices ranging between 115 and 120 Cuban pesos for each of these currencies.

The country can not sustain an exchange market at the current official exchange rate of 24 pesos for one dollar, Gil affirmed, but we must take into account these values in the street market to contribute to the financial balance.

In this sense, it was already announced in May, at the extraordinary session of the National People’s Power Assembly (Parliament), the implementation of a secondary exchange market for state and non-state economic actors.

That action began its implementation, although in a limited manner, according to the Deputy Prime Minister, and its objective was to reduce the impact on prices for the citizens, increase supply, and at the same time advance in the gradual recovery of the purchasing power of the Cuban peso.

“We cannot dollarize the country,” Gil emphasized, therefore anything we do to increase supplies in Cuban pesos is in the right direction.