The Indian delegation with Ambassador of Cuba Janakiraman IFS and Deputy Minister of foriegn trade and investment of Republic of Cuba Rodrigo Malmoerca Diaz.

As restrictions on international travel have eased, a 10-member delegation from the Indian Economic Trade Organization visited the Capital of Havana and Varadero for exploring opportunities in Tourism, Investment, Healthcare Industry, Culture, and Pharma. The delegation was led by the President of the IETO, Dr Asif Iqbal who took this opportunity to further accelerate the trade collaborations between the two countries.

Attending the event organized by the Cuba Chamber of Commerce in Havana, the delegation met the industry professionals in Cuba to explore various possibilities in areas of interest to Indian investors, this is one of the most important visits, especially after the establishment of the Cuba Bureau office in Hyderabad which is also the pharma capital of India. The Ambassador of Cuba HE Alejandro Simancas Marin visited Hyderabad recently and invited the Indian delegation to visit Cuba. This delegation is one of the most important events on the bilateral relations calendar, the delegation met with the Cuban Deputy Minister of Foreign Trade and Investment, Officials from the Agricultural University, Havana Scientific Park, and Biopharma companies, LaBiofam to explore the vaccine production possibility in India for Lung Cancer. The delegation also explored opportunities for the tourism sector in the beautiful beach town of Varadero. “We intend to invite the Indian Film Industry to Varadero and have they hosted the Annual Award function as this location offers an excellent ecosystem for film tourism.” Said Wali Kashvi one of the delegates from the Mumbai film Industry popularly called Bollywood.

Throughout the visit, the Cuban side organized meetings very fruitful and prospective and shared tourism developments including destination updates and new information on accommodation and excursions. “The pharma sector is one of the most advanced in the world and we have found breakthroughs in Psoriasis treatment, we will continue to explore India’s 1.3 billion markets to connect the possibilities of the Cuban pharma sector,” said Murthy Devarabhotla who is a pharma company owner and also the head of the Cuba trade office in Hyderabad.

Central to the discussions was the Government’s vision to build a sustainable and competitive future for India and Cuba’s future developments in self-sustainability, IT training, and investment while expanding the island’s enchanting product offerings within the Indian investor community, thereby creating a vibrant environment that would allow Indian investors to maximize the benefits of the opportunities offered by Cuba.

The Delegation was accompanied by the Director of the Cuba Chamber of Commerce and head of the Asia desk Loida Rivera Fabre who said “The ultimate aim is that as many Indian investors will participate with their true ownership of our community opportunities. At the same time, we will be able to add more depth to the authentic experiences for Indian visitors. We are in a very fortunate position as tourism arrivals are recovering and showing strong growth towards pre-pandemic figures. Now is the time to transform and grow our tourism industry for the benefit of all. Our people have shown their resilience in these challenging times as we have remained open to international visitors, and we want to thank them.”

Dr Asif Iqbal, President of the Indian Economic Trade Organization also commented: “There is a true sense of optimism in the Cuba India relations around 2022 being a successful year as travel becomes more attractive again, with restrictions have eased in the last few weeks. During our meetings, we heard positive feedback on these relations and are eagerly looking forward to taking a larger Indian delegation for the Havana International Fair that is held in November, so we need to focus our marketing efforts on pushing the opportunities in Cuba for our Indian investors. Indian Embassy in Havana has been very supportive in various interactions by the delegation”

The delegation visit culminated in various MOUs signed by the delegation with a specific Action plan drafted by the Chamber of Commerce of Cuba and presented by the President of the Chamber Antonio Carricarte Corona who welcomed the pace of the Indian delegation and pledged to strengthen the objectives of such commercial and economic relations. With specialists in Pharma, Agriculture and other sectors present, the President of the Chamber of Commerce took the opportunity to thank the Indian delegation for its continued support.