Japan builds ties with a Cuba of economic reforms, closer relations with
Published May 02, 2015EFE
HAVANA – Japan seeks to strengthen it relations with Cuba and support
its economic “modernization,” at a time marked by closer ties between
the island and the United States, with the state visit of Foreign
Minister Fumio Kishida to the Caribbean nation.
Kishida landed in Havana on Thursday on a flight from the U.S. for a
visit aimed at promoting economic relations and bilateral cooperation in
a number of areas.
The Japanese minister is accompanied by representatives of 20 companies
in the sectors of logistics, finance, automobiles, infrastructure,
trade, health and tourism.
The commercial presence of the Asian country in Cuba is small, but now
has a chance to grow thanks to the new economic possibilities on the
island, which needs some $2.5 billion in foreign investment to guarantee
the success of its economic reforms to “modernize” it socialist model.
One element encouraging Tokyo to establish closer ties with Cuba is the
possibility that the U.S. might end it embargo on the island, which
would allow Japanese companies based in the United States to operate in
This Friday, the Japanese minister toured the historic downtown district
of the Cuban capital, the beaches east of the city and the Hemingway
House at Finca Vigia museum that preserves the legacy left by the
American writer on the island during his long sojourns here, officials
at the Japanese Embassy told Efe this Friday.
Kishida was also to meet in Havana on Friday with Japanese entrepreneurs
Meanwhile the Japanese business owners and executives accompanying
Kishida will take part in a bilateral business forum at the Hotel
Nacional in Havana, and also plan to visit the Special Development Area
at the port of Mariel, located west of Havana, the first of its kind in
Cuba and intended to become a large business center that will attract
Official bilateral trade figures provided by the Japanese Foreign
Ministry indicate that in 2014 Japan’s exports to Cuba were valued at
4.21 billion yen ($35.05 million), and at the same time, the island
exported to the Asian country goods worth 2.01 billion yen ($16.72
million), chiefly consisting of coffee, tobacco and fish.
Cuba and Japan established diplomatic relations in 1929, which were
suspended during World War II and renewed in 1957, two years before the
victory of the revolution led by Fidel Castro, whose government was
recognized by Tokyo in 1959.
Source: Japan builds ties with a Cuba of economic reforms, closer
relations with U.S. | Fox News Latino –