Informacion economica sobre Cuba

New Business Owners Consider Turning In Their Licenses Due to Lack of
Freedom / Alberto Mendez Castello
Posted on November 9, 2013

PUERTO PADRE, Cuba, November, — Officials in charge of
overseeing the self-employment sector are updating their documentation
of its licensees and subsequently warning them of possible violations.

Eddy Vega — a manufacturer and vendor of plumbing supplies, who buys and
refurbishes pieces of tubing, accessories and old keys — was warned in
no uncertain terms by his interviewer that it is strictly forbidden for
anyone but the state to trade in metals. Eddy, a practicing Christian,
told this reporter he is thinking of turning in his business license.

Self-employed workers are summoned to the old social workers’
headquarters, where they are interviewed one-by-one.

Similarly, food sellers, carpenters, masons, people who lease out their
homes and anyone who is self-employed are called to appear. A carpenter
said, “It’s very difficult to work this way. It’s already almost
impossible to get wood. There are too many obstacles”
Small hotel operators were summoned by city officials in Viviendas a
week ago. One official who requested anonymity said, “We have to exert
control… Often lodging crosses the line into prostitution.” One
operator, who asked not to be identified, confessed, “I’m going to turn
in my license. In the future I will take in guests discreetly like
before, without paying taxes. I think I will save up all the money that
for months would have gone to paying taxes for paying the fine, if I am
ever caught.”

These actions by the authorities serve as a policing tool, as outlined
in the Cuban Penal Code: “Those not covered under any of the dangerous
categories referred to in Article 73 (habitual drunkenness and
alcoholism, addiction and antisocial behavior) with links to or
relationships with persons potentially dangerous to society, to other
people or to the social, economic and political order of the socialist
state, and who may be prone to crime, shall be given warnings by the
prevailing police authorities to prevent their engaging in socially
dangerous or criminal activities.”
The Penal Code also stipulates that the warning shall, “in all cases,”
be issued by written affidavit, explaining the reasons for the warning
as well as the response of the person being warned. It also calls for
both the person being warned and the attending officer to sign the

In spite of the stipulation in the Penal Code, police do not ask those
being warned what they have to say in response to the warning. Instead
they ask, “What are you involved in?”

Needless to say, self-employed workers here are not allowed to think
about why they cannot acquire pieces of tubing and old keys for
reconditioning and later resale.

by Alberto Méndez Castelló

Thursday, November 7, 2013 | Cubanet

Spanish post
7 November 2013

Source: “New Business Owners Consider Turning In Their Licenses Due to
Lack of Freedom / Alberto Mendez Castello | Translating Cuba” –

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