HAVANA, April 15th (Reuters) – Retiring Cuban Communist Party leader Raul Castro promised a decade ago he would transform the Soviet-style Read more
HAVANA, Feb. 5th (Reuters) Cuba’s imports from China tumbled to $483 million last year versus $791 million in 2019, according to data from the Chinese Customs Office, Read more
HAVANA, Dec 18 (Reuters) Cuba’s already cash-strapped economy shrank 11% in 2020 due to the pandemic and tougher U.S. sanctions Read more
HAVANA, Sep 28 ( PL) The Council of Ministers of Cuba approved new measures to improve the work of state companies, local media reported on Monday. Read more
HAVANA, July 29th (Reuters) Cuba is loosening restrictions on small businesses as it seeks to stimulate a state-dominated economy hammered by the implosion of ally Venezuela, U.S. sanctions and the pandemic.
HAVANA, May 23th (By Vicente Morin Aguado) At his 86 years of age, Carmelo Mesa-Lago speaks loud and clear, he is far removed from any “ism”, Read more
HAVANA, April 23rd (by Dr.C Juan Triana Cordoví) The forecasts for the world economy, whether they are the most moderate or cautious, Read more
HAVANA, March 29th As Cubans received news this week of stringent measures announced by the government to fight the spread of the coronavirus on the island, Read more
HAVANA, Oct. 25th Minister of Domestic Trade Betsy Díaz attributed the situation to the “intensification of the U.S. blockade against Cuba,”
HAVANA, Oct. 20th by Pavel Vidal Alejandro This week the Cuban government announced a group of monetary transformations to face the complex financial and balance of payments situation that is extremely overwhelming the economy.
HAVANA, August 12th Is has been widely reported, Cuba has entered a new period of austerity. On July 8, President Castro told the Cuban National Assembly that Cuban Read more
HAVANA, May 23th( Huffintonpost)President Obama’s visit to Havana in March shined a spotlight on Cuba—a country that, one’s political views aside, is regarded warmly by people around the world. Over the last two years, a new foreign investment law has sparked the interest of many companies (especially European ones) and the re-establishment of diplomatic relations with the United States has also made the possibility of trade and investment deals with U.S. companies seem closer.
In this context, a number of corporate leaders are wondering how they should view the Cuban opportunity while avenues to move beyond the embargo are pursued in Washington. In a new article on bcgperspectives.com, we address the question of what the evolution of the Cuban economy means for multinationals.
The country clearly has great economic potential and there were high hopes that the recently concluded VII Congress of the Communist Party of Cuba would take further steps to create a more hospitable environment in which private enterprise can make greater contributions to accelerated economic growth and job creation.
Such steps—which the government officially refers to as aiming to “perfect” or “update” the Cuban economic model—could, for instance, be modeled on what the Cuban president in his main speech referred to as the processes of “reform” in China and “renewal” in Vietnam. But these market liberalization measures have not yet been adopted.
They remain works in progress. Meanwhile, the Cuban economy is lacking a growth dynamo, and its slow “brewing” runs the risk of stagnating. Without stronger economic growth, the country will lack the resources needed to maintain the social achievements of recent decades.
Foreign investors have an important role to play in a number of industries (beer included) and in the sorely needed development of all kinds of infrastructure. In areas such as information and telecommunication services, their impact (especially in a competitive market environment) could be quick, positive and pervasive.
But for the right kind of investor to be attracted—those who will contribute to adding value and jobs in Cuba—they will need more than tax holidays, incentives and special zones. They will need regulatory transparency, reliability in the implementation of policies and flexibility in the operating environment for businesses.
The experience of many countries shows that sustainable economic success cannot be built on a combination of only foreign investors and state-owned enterprises. Cuba is fortunate to have a well-educated and creative population—fertile ground for entrepreneurship, provided that an appropriate legal framework is established to facilitate private enterprise.
In addition, there is another untapped homegrown asset: a large population of professionally experienced Cubans living outside the country, many of whom might be keen to return home and contribute to its prosperity with their skills, savings and connections.
Creating an environment in which returning is an attractive possibility could produce a great growth boost and reassure potential foreign investors that Cuba is a place where business can thrive. Few, if any, countries have ever had such an opportunity. Cuba is well placed to pursue it if decisive, transparent steps are taken soon to make it possible.
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