10/10/13 - GlobalPost - Cuba makes room for private initiative in tourism sector
Havana, Oct 10 (EFE).- Cuba's state-owned travel agencies and tourist
entities will be able to book private lodgings and restaurants, the
government said Thursday.
In a resolution published in the Official Gazette, the Tourism Ministry
gives the green light for individuals who rent out homes and rooms or
operate restaurants, known as "paladares," to offer their services to the
state tourism sector.
In like manner, tourist agencies and entities will be able to book the
services of private individuals or the self-employed to organize
excursions for groups of visitors such as rides on horseback, in carriages
or in classic or antique automobiles that are still in wide use on the
The tourist sector will pay for these services in convertible pesos, or
CUCs, the value of which is maintained at parity with the U.S. dollar.
This new ruling is part of the set of reforms undertaken by the government
of President Raul Castro to "update" the communist island's economic
One of the main measures included in the adjustment plan has been a
controlled opening of the economy to private initiative.
More than 436,000 Cubans are self-employed in one of the roughly 200
authorized activities or professions.
Since the move toward private enterprise began in 2010 that sector has
grown by 18 percent, although it still only represents 2 percent of the
One of the most visible effects of the phenomenon has been the
proliferation of non-state restaurants and private lodgings licensed to
rent out rooms.
It is calculated that there are more than 2,200 paladares on the island,
along with 6,200 available rooms and 950 homes that are properly licensed
to be rented out to the public.
Copyright EFE, 2013.
Original Source / Fuente Original:
CUBA-L FAIR USE NOTICE
This server contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of Cuba's political, economic, human rights, international, cultural, educational, scientific, sports and historical issues, among others. We distribute the materials on the basis of a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107. The material is distributed without profit. The material should be used for information, research and educational purposes. For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/ uscode/17/107.shtml.