Marabu charcoal: First Cuban export to the U.S. in 50 years

As Cuban fields are being cleared of Marabu, U.S. citizens will now be able to purchase this quality variety of charcoal. On January 18, two days before U.S. President-elect, Donald Trump, is sworn into office, the first 40 ton shipment will arrive to the U.S. from Cuba, representing a historic occasion – the first export of Cuban goods to the U.S. in five decades.

This is the result of an agreement signed between the CubaExport entity and U.S. Coabana Trading LLC company, which took place at midday, January 5, at Cuba’s Ministry of Foreign Trade and Investment (Mincex), following a lengthy negotiation process.

The accord was signed by director of CubaExport, Isabel O’Reilly, and President of Coabana Trading LLC, Scott Gilbert.
“This will be the first contract, but we hope to continue our relations for many years to come and not just with vegetable charcoal, but other exportable products such as honey and coffee,” explained O’Reilly speaking to Cubadebate.

The product will be sold at 420 USD per ton, the highest price achieved by CubaExport in over 10 years marketing this product, which normally sells on the international market for between 340 and 380 USD, “but with the U.S. we were able to get a higher price,” added O’Reilly.

Meanwhile, Scott Gilbert noted that it was a privilege to be visiting the island, and described the agreement as important for both countries and a step further toward building bridges between the U.S. and Cuba.

Regarding Donald Trump’s presidency, to begin January 20, Gilbert noted that if his administration supports free trade, then there should be no problem establishing these types of agreements.

The process to export Cuban marabu charcoal starts with agricultural cooperatives which cut down the material to clear the way for their crops. This is then sold to another entity which processes and prepares it for sale, with CubaExport responsible for handling export procedures.

In addition to CubaExport, Cuban charcoal is also marketed by Cimex, Cítricos Caribes and Alcona, which between them export a maximum of 80,000 tons a year to between five and six countries. Meanwhile, efforts are currently underway to branch out to the UK and German markets.

Marabu charcoal has a high calorific power, making it one of the best in the world. It is produced in natural wood burning stoves and does not contribute to deforestation. (Cubadebate)

Havana Trade Fair 2016: Negotiations begin, possible alliances explored

Source:  Granma
November 1 2016

The 34th Havana International Trade Fair reaffirms its status as Cuba and the Caribbean’s most important event of this kind, and one of the most representative in Latin America.

Author: Yudy Castro Morales |

negotiations begin Havana Trade Fair 2016.jpg

Photo: Jose M. Correa

Once again, the Havana International Trade Fair, in its 34th edition, reaffirms its status as Cuba and the Caribbean’s most important event of this kind, and one of the most representative in Latin America, said Rodrigo Malmierca Díaz, minister of Foreign Trade and Investment, upon inaugurating the fair yesterday, October 31, set to continue through November 4 at the ExpoCuba fairgrounds.

More than 3500 exhibitors

With Ricardo Cabrisas Ruiz, a Council of Ministers vice president and Minister of Economy and Planning on hand, Malmierca reported, “More than 3,500 exhibitors have been accredited in an area of 28,934 square meters, with businesspeople from 73 countries, making this edition the largest in recent years.”

Ethiopia, Tanzania and Gabon

Once again this year, Venezuela, China and Russia return as important partners, and Spain has sent the most exhibitors; while France, Italy and Japan have expanded their participation. Attending for the first time are Ethiopia, Tanzania and Gabon, according to Malmierca.

Cuban trade mission starts working sessions in Jamaica

 Kingston, July 8, 2014.

Cuban Cham of Comm meets Anthony Hylton 2The trade mission from the Chamber of Commerce of Cuba made their first presentations at the Conference Room of the Hotel Four Seasons in Kingston. The plenary session was chaired by the Hon. Anthony Hylton, Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce of Jamaica; Ms. Diane Edwards, President, JAMPRO; Mr. Robert Scott, Vice President, Export and Market Development, JAMPRO; Mr. Ricardo Tur Novo, Minister Counsellor and Charge d’ Affaires, Embassy of Cuba in Jamaica; Ms. Mirtha Rippes Aller, officer, Chamber of Commerce of Cuba; and Mr. Jesús González Pérez, officer, Ministry of Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment of Cuba.

Close bonds of friendship

In his address, the Hon. Anthony Hylton, Minister of Industry, referred to the close bonds of friendship between the peoples of Jamaica and Cuba. He said that Cuba is a market that offers many opportunities and we have to work toward further strengthening the economic ties that unite us in the future. He stressed the importance of Cuba’s cooperation in health care and education.

The Minister said that Jamaica, as well as the other CARICOM member States, continues to support the resolution calling for an end of the US blockade against Cuba and recalled that Jamaica worked within the regional body to deal with the ban of U.S. warehouse club PriceSmart on Cuban diplomats that prevented them from accessing its services in Jamaica.

Ms. Diane Edwards thanked the Chamber of Commerce of Cuba and the Embassy of Cuba in Jamaica for their assistance in organizing the event.

The Minister Counsellor and Charge d’ Affaires of the Embassy of Cuba in Jamaica noted that the visit of the Cuban trade mission takes place in a context where his country is working to diversify the economy, and that this forum will contribute to continue to identify business opportunities and increase existing trade between the two countries.

cuban medical staffcThe officers from the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment and the Chamber of Commerce presented the results achieved by Cuba and Jamaica in the areas of trade, cooperation and others. González Pérez noted that, for example, with regard to medical cooperation, the two-operating room Eye Centre has had a great impact not only in Jamaica but also in the Caribbean region.

Biotechnology and pharmacology

For her part, Rippes Aller provided detailed information on the procedures and requirements to invest in Cuba, as well as details of the Mariel Special Development Zone opened on November 1, 2013. She stated that the fields of greatest interest to her country are biotechnology and pharmacology, renewable energy, tourism, food industry, among others.

Mariel Special Development Zone cubaCaribbean and Latin Travel Agency, Aerogaviota Airline representative in Jamaica, made a presentation to promote the services of the agency, the only one operating direct flights from Kingston to Santiago de Cuba and Havana and from Montego Bay to Holguin and Havana.

Source:  Embassy of Cuba in Jamaica

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Group of 77 Declaration: For a New World Order for Living Well

Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Group of 77
For a New World Order for Living Well
Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Plurinational State of Bolivia, 14 and 15 June 2014

official declaration group of 77 june 2014


Part I: Overall context

1.       We, the Heads of State and Government of the member States of the Group of 77 and China, have gathered in the city of Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Plurinational State of Bolivia, for the commemoration of the fiftieth anniversary of the establishment of the Group.

2.       We commemorate the formation of the Group of 77 on 15 June 1964 and recall the ideals and principles contained in the historic Joint Declaration of the Seventy-Seven Developing Countries, signed at the end of the first session of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), held in Geneva.

3.       We recall that the first ever statement of the Group of 77 pledged to promote equality in the international economic and social order and promote the interests of the developing world, declared their unity under a common interest and defined the Group as “an instrument for enlarging the area of cooperative endeavour in the international field and for securing mutually beneficent relationships with the rest of the world”.

4.       We also recall the first Ministerial Meeting of the Group of 77, held in Algiers from 10 to 25 October 1964, at which the Group adopted the Charter of Algiers, which established the principles of unity, complementarity, cooperation and solidarity of the developing countries and their determination to strive for economic and social development, individually or collectively.

5.       We highlight that the Group of 77 has provided the means for the countries of the South to articulate and promote their collective social and economic interests and enhanced their joint negotiating capacity within the United Nations system, and note with satisfaction that the Group has established a permanent secretariat at United Nations Headquarters in New York and chapters in Geneva, Nairobi, Paris, Rome, Vienna and the Group of 24 in Washington, D.C., and that its membership now stands at 133 member States.

6.       We also recall the successful holding of the first South Summit of the Groupof 77 and China in Havana in April 2000 and the second South Summit in Doha in June 2005, at which the status of the Group of 77 and China was elevated to the level of Heads of State and Government and at which important declarations and plans of action were adopted that have guided our Group and constitute the fundamental basis for the construction of a new world order and an agenda owned by the countries of the South for the establishment of a more just, democratic and equal system that benefits our peoples.

7.       We pledge to continue the tradition of our countries on building national development and uniting at the international level, towards the establishment of a just international order in the world economy that supports developing countries achieve our objectives of sustained economic growth, full employment, social equity, provision of basic goods and services to our people, protection of the environment and living in harmony with nature.

8.       We are proud of the legacy and great achievements of the Group of 77 and China in defending and promoting the interest of the developing countries over the past 50 years, which have contributed gradually to greater strength and influence on economic, social and environmental issues. We pledge to build on this foundation and continue making progress towards a world order that is just, equitable, stable and peaceful. Major landmarks in this regard have been the adoption by the United Nations General Assembly of the Declaration on the Establishment of a New International Economic Order in 1974, the Declaration on the Right to Development in 1986 and several other historic declarations that recognize and address the needs and interests of developing countries and constitute an utmost priority.

9.       We believe in the peaceful settlement of conflicts through dialogue.

10.     We also note that, despite five decades of achievements, there are still serious shortfalls in fulfilling our Group’s objectives, and that our countries individually and collectively now face ongoing and emerging challenges, including the slowdown of the global economy and its effects on our countries and the lack of adequate systemic action and accountability to address the causes and effects of the global financial and economic crises, thus creating the risk of continuing with the pattern of crisis cycles.

11.     We also note the gaps in many of our countries in meeting the needs of employment, food, water, health care, education, housing, physical infrastructure and energy of our people, as well as the looming environmental crisis, including the negative impacts of climate change in developing countries, the increasing shortage of drinking water and the loss of biodiversity.

12.     We stress that imbalances in the global economy and the inequitable structures and outcomes in the trading, financial, monetary and technological systems led to the establishment of our Group. Nevertheless, these imbalances still prevail today in some ways with even more adverse effects on developing countries. Therefore, we pledge to continue and intensify our efforts to strive for a fair, just and equitable international order oriented towards the fulfilment of the development needs of developing countries.

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CELAC to strengthen relationship with China

March 07, 2013
by Helena Powell

  • CELAC works to establish official channels to strengthen relationship with China;
  • Economic zone planned in Costa Rica to attract Chinese investment;
  • Ecuador gains $80m loan from China


CELAC works to establish official channels to strengthen relationship with China

At the most recent summit of the Comunidad de Estados Latinoamericanos y Caribeños (Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, CELAC), held in Santiago during the last weekend of January 2013, leaders of members states instructed their foreign Continue reading