Louisiana in favor of economic normalization with Cuba

As part of the working agenda of the delegation from the State of Louisiana in Cuba, two Memorandums of Understanding were signed between Cuban enterprises and this U.S. representation.

The memorandums were signed by the Cuban Port Authority and the Ports Association of Louisiana, and by the Cuban Agriculture Business group and the Department of Agriculture and Forestry of the U.S. state.

The U.S. delegation was headed by State Governor John Bel Edwards, a fervent supporter of the economic normalization between both nations. He was accompanied by academicians from universities of the state, local authorities and representatives of entities of the state’s economy, with a working program that included visits to the José Antonio Echeverría Technological University, the Agrarian University, the Mariel Special Development Zone and meetings with the Ministries of Foreign Trade, Public Health and Agriculture.

Edwards has joined by the governors of New York, Andrew Cuomo; of Arkansas, Asa Hutchinson; of Texas, Greg Abbott, and the visit to the Caribbean country since early this year by those from Virginia, Terry McAuliffe; and Missouri, Jeremiah Nixon, who between 2015 and this year visited the Caribbean island after the announcement of the reestablishment of diplomatic relations between Cuba and the United States. In addition, U.S. legislators, businesspeople and the Secretaries of State, of Agriculture and of Commerce have been to the island, EFE news agency pointed out.

In the last decade, Louisiana exported to the island more than any other state of the Union.

Turks Can Now Celebrate New Year’s Eve in Cuba

Turkish Airlines announced it is going to incorporate the Cuba destination to its offer. It is planning on opening the Istanbul-Havana-Caracas line on December 12 of this year, according to Iker Ayci, CEO of the airline company. The decision, partly motivated by the high cost of fuel, is related to a strategy of the airline, which has already declared Latin America as its second future market in expansion.

Bogotá, Panama, Buenos Aires and Sao Paulo are the region’s airports that have already seen the arrival of aircraft with the Turkish emblem to its hangars. The Havana-Caracas line will be added on the aforementioned date, while Mexico DF-Cancun will be included in the company’s projections for 2017.

Santiago de Cuba in Figures for First Semester

Santiago de Cuba presented favorable results in some indicators at the close of the first semester of 2016. The mean wage increased to 694.00 CUP, 17.5 percent higher than the previous year. The performance of the local enterprises was also positive, reflected in an increase in net sales, profits and work productivity.

However, the brief report presented by the daily Sierra Maestra also previewed non-compliances in the productions of ground coffee, raw sugar, refined sugar, molasses, cement, calcareous sand and terrazzo floor tiles.

These predictions will perhaps worsen to some extent after the passage of Hurricane Matthew through the country’s eastern region, although the province was not directly affected.

Cuba Modernizes Its Tax System

According to statements by the Cuban minister of finances and prices, Cuba is in a process of modernization to increase the levels of tax collection.

In a country where there is a scarce culture of paying taxes as a result of the same economic and work deformations that have restricted profit-making activities from which taxes are collected for this concept, this type of affirmation can generate uncertainty.

Lina Pedraza, during the 14th International Tax Seminar, which was attended by some 150 delegates from Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean, commented that the modifications are linked to promoting the culture and responsibility of citizens for paying taxes, the protection of the most vulnerable human groups and the redistribution of the incomes from the sectors with the greatest economic capacity.

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