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Cuba: economic performance and business environment. Official name: Republic of Cuba Capital: Havana Official language: Spanish National day: 1st January Area: 110,992 sq. km Population: 11.2 million Average life expectancy at birth: 78 years

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  • Official name: Republic of Cuba

  • Capital: Havana

  • Official language: Spanish

  • National day: 1st January

  • Area: 110,992 sq. km

  • Population: 11.2 million

  • Average life expectancy at birth: 78 years

  • Infant mortality rate: 4.9 per 1,000 live births (2011)

  • Public health system: free, open and universal

  • Literacy rate: 98%

  • Education: free, public and universal



Economic performance in 2012

  • GDP growth 3.1%,compared with a planned 3.4%

  • 2% growth in the farming sector

  • 4.4% growth in manufacturing industry

  • 5.0%growth in transport & communications

  • 5.9% growth in trade

  • 20% growth in sugar production

Forecast key indicators and targets for 2013

  • GDP growth: 3.7%

  • Farming sector growth: 4.5 %

  • Manufacturing industry growth: 4.7 %

  • Sugar production up by 21.7%

  • Capital investment up by 34 %

Forecast key indicators and targets for 2013

  • Growth in visitor arrivals:8.5%; tourism sector revenues up by 12.5 %

  • Growth in labour productivity: 2.6 %

Forecast key indicators and targets for 2013

  • Continue the process of updating Cuba’s economic model, including non-state enterprise management regimes, with the aim of boosting the country’s economic growth and raising our people’s standard of living.

  • Implement a gradual, controlled process designed to separate state and business functions.

  • Progress application of the comprehensive strategy for exporting services, diversifying markets and enhancing export potential with higher value added, technological content and quality.

Foreign trade

  • Cuba’s economy is open and highly dependent on foreign trade.

  • Foreign trade is conducted via import and export companies specialized by product sector.

  • Trade is carried on with over 3,000 foreign firms.

Foreign trade

  • Cuba is a signatory of the UN (Vienna) Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods; it is a founder member of GATT and belongs to the WTO.

  • There are no import quotas.

  • All products that enter Cuba must be declared to customs and are subject to inspection.

Foreign trade

  • Banning of items as imports or exports reflects the provisions GATT Art. 20 (narcotics and similar sustances, arms etc.).

  • Public health and phytosanitary regulations are consistent with the relevant international conventions and the regulations published by FAO, WTO and other international bodies.

  • Adoption of INCOTERMS and use of documentary credits and similar instruments.

Foreign trade by region*

América 55%

Europe 27%

Asia 15%

Middle East, Africa & Oceania 3%

*2012 data

Cuba’s main trading partners

in 2012

Our main trading partners include Venezuela, China, Spain, Canada, the Netherlands, Brazil, Mexico, Italy, Algeria and the Russian Federation

Doing business with Cuba

Identify the import-export company

A7 or D7 visa


Authentication & registration of documents


Supplier & customer catalogue

Doing business with Cuba

  • A base and/or registration in Cuba are not required of foreign firms trading with Cuba.

  • A foreign firm wishing to establish a commercial presence may opt for:

    • opening a foreign mercantile companybranch, or

    • entering into a mercantile company agency agreement

  • Requirements for opening a branch, under Decree 206 of 1996:

    • 5 years’ existence in the country of origin.

    • 3 years’ stable dealings with Cuba involving a volume of business with Cuban firms worth at least US $500,000 per year.

    • US $50,000 capital stock.

Chamber of Commerce of the Republic of Cuba


  • . A national, public-law institution, formed under Cuban law in 1963. Its mission is to promote the development of its member companies to the benefit of the national economy.

  • Voluntary membership. It has 687 affiliated companies, operating in foreign trade, including producers, marketing concerns, importers and exporters of goods and services.

  • It is a not-for-profit body funded by the subscriptions of its member companies and fees for the services it provides.

Chamber of commerce of the Republic of Cuba

  • Main services

  • Promoting investment projects prioritized by the state, and Cuban visible and invisible exports.

  • Organizing trade fairs, exhibitions and trade missions in Cuba and in markets abroad; drawing up personalized working agendas for foreign entrepreneurs wishing to explore the Cuban market.

Chamber of commerce of the Republic of Cuba

Main services

  • Trade information and training activities for the member companies.

  • Registration and certification.

  • Advising on the legal aspects and practices of international trade.

Chamber of commerce of the Republic of Cuba

The Cuban Court of International Trade Arbitration, attached to the Cuban Chamber of Commerce

Chamber of commerce of the Republic of Cuba

  • International affiliations:

  • International Chamber of Commerce (ICC)

  • World Trade Center Association (WTCA)

  • Bureau International des Expositions (BIE)

  • Asociación de Ferias Internacionales de América (AFIDA)

  • Caribbean Association of Industry & Commerce (CAIC)

  • Global Standard 1 (GS1)

2013 trade fair & exhibition calendar,


14-24 February 22nd International Book Fair

25-31 March 15th International Agricultural Fair

18-22 MarchINFORMATICA 2013 (15th International IT Convention & Fair)

14-24 May 23rd International Tourism Fair


3-9 November Havana International Trade Fair, FIHAV

December 17th International Crafts Fair

21ST FIHAV, 2013

3-9 November 2013