Tags: Cuba | tourism | rebound | market

Cuba's International Tourism Makes Rebound

Friday, 14 May 2010 08:20 AM

After two months showing decreases in the amount of visitors for the months of March and April, Cuba recovered its grounds to position itself as a leading Caribbean destination in tourism although it has access to only 50 per cent of its natural market because of the US blockade.

There is no doubt that in terms of tourism, Cuba has overcome multiple setbacks and exhibits at the end of the first four months of the year healthy arrival numbers.

Despite the growth of competition, and Cuba at a disadvantage as a result of the difficult economic environment in which it operates, climate change and lack of access to 50 per cent of the Caribbean tourism market, it has weathered the storm.

"Cuba has overcome these setbacks," said Cuba's Tourism Minister Manuel Marrero last week. He announced that the initial quarter of the year was historic, with the reception of more than one million travellers (1.053 million).

"It was surprising because we started with a bad January and February, really bad ones, but March and April were very good," said Marrero.

The Cuban authorities decided to continue betting on the strengthening of the tourist industry with options such as marinas, golf courses and other tourism investments, while seeking to design the best strategy to take forward the depressed sugar industry which has been displaced as Cuba's top hard currency earner, generating annual revenues of some two billion dollars and showing signs of good health.

The results of the January-April period only served to build on encouraging tourism arrival numbers. Cuba closed 2009 with a rise of 3.5 per cent, when global activity contracted by 4.3 per cent.

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Friday, 14 May 2010 08:20 AM
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