Spain bolsters relations with Cuba via debt deal, new agreements
3/11/2015 – 1:52
Havana, Nov 2 (EFE).- Spain and Cuba on Monday took new steps toward
bolstering bilateral economic relations, reaching agreement on a deal to
refinance the island’s short-term debt and signing several accords
during the visit of Spanish Economy Minister Luis de Guindos and
Industry Minister Jose Manuel Soria.
De Guindos and Soria inaugurated the Spanish pavilion at the Havana
International Fair, or FIHAV, where Spain was once again the country
with the best representation, with a record 160 companies, accounting
for more than 25 percent of the businesses at the event.
The unprecedented participation of two Spanish Cabinet ministers at
FIHAV, the island’s most important business gathering, comes as
international interest in Cuba grows following the restoration of
relations between Havana and Washington.
“New stages and new opportunities are opening, I’m convinced that Spain,
as happens in foreign trade and in many other markets, will play a
fundamental role, especially given the long-standing relationship with
Cuba,” De Guindos said.
Soria, for his part, noted the “commitment to permanence” by Spanish
businesses on the island, adding that companies from the Iberian nation
have “many years in Cuba,” staying through good and bad times.
The inauguration of the Spanish pavilions at FIHAV was attended by five
members of Cuban President Raul Castro’s government, including one of
his vice presidents, Ricardo Cabrisas.
The Spanish ministers signed several agreements and memorandums covering
economic, innovation, development energy and industrial cooperation.
The most important agreement covers the refinancing of Cuba’s 201.5
million euros ($221.9 million) in short-term debt, including principal
and interest, to Spain.
De Guindos and Cabrisas signed the agreement at the Council of State’s
The agreement addresses a problem dating back 15 years and opens the way
for the countries to make progress on trade and economic cooperation.
De Guindos and Soria will return to Spain on Monday night.
Source: Spain bolsters relations with Cuba via debt deal, new agreements
– elEconomista.es –