Tourism grows in Cuba despite US Blockade

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Contramaestre 21 Nov.- The measures to tighten the US blockade against Cuba continue to increase, however a good high season and a closing of the year with nearly 1.6 percent growth in visitors is predicted by Manuel Marrero Cruz, Minister of Tourism (INTUR), according to ACN.

On the occasion of Cuban Tourism Day (20 November), which was celebrated for the first time, Marrero Cruz stressed that these results are due to the intense work carried out by INTUR with the support of the Ministry of Transport, hotel chains and the media, in the search for alternatives and in the promotion of the country’s strengths.

This is the only way to be successful in the face of the U.S.’s efforts to harm tourism in particular. The Treasury Department abruptly suspended cruise ship trips on June 5 and more recently regular flights to Cuba, except Havana, the minister said.

The direction of tourism in Cuba has adopted 56 measures whose results are beginning to be seen, for example, in that despite the suspension of travel by cruise ships, yachts and flights to most of the tourist destinations of the largest of the Antilles, are growing by 10 percent arrivals of tourists by air, the main one, and we plan to close the year with four million 300 thousand visitors, for about 1.6 percent growth, the minister said.

Marrero Cruz stressed that it is also expected to bring more revenue from sales or negotiations, at the same time that before the bankruptcy of two large companies in the United Kingdom, Jet2Holiday and Thomas Cook, which brought together more than 95,000 tourists to Cuba, we are discussing with other chains, which do not operate in the Caribbean, in order to make them interested in the island.

On the other hand, he added that in his recent visit to China he observed an important interest in increasing the visits of his nationals to our country, as well as other destinations there are many people eager to come to Cuba, but they do not know how, so the Ministry of Transport will cooperate to resolve this situation.

Despite the difficulties, tourism does not stop. Our government has maintained the priority in the investment processes, hotels are still being repaired and others are being built, in order to finish this year some four thousand rooms and by 2020 another four thousand 200 will be in execution, said the minister.

He also thanked the media for their support in promoting the goodness of the largest of the Antilles, intending to break a matrix of opinion of the enemies of the Revolution aimed at highlighting shortcomings and deficiencies, but the tourists themselves have been able to verify the reality and become promoters, he said.

This Wednesday the largest of the Antilles celebrated, for the first time, the Cuban Tourism Day, a date to remember the efforts made by the Commander in Chief Fidel Castro to develop the sector, since he was its first president of the National Institute of the Tourism Industry, when it was created, 60 years ago, on November 20, 1959.

(With information of ACN in Spanish)

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