Through a video conference between Havana and Washington, met last week with representatives of U.S. business advisor of the Ministry of Tourism of Cuba (MINTUR), Miguel Figueras, a meeting where he warned that the U.S. industry lost when year more than 1,100 million dollars (about 767,000 million) because of the travel ban to Cuba.
The representative of the Ministry of Tourism spoke from Havana, with the representative of a specialist business developer based in Washington, Kirby Jones, with extensive experience in contacts with the island, or president of the Association of the United States Tour Operators (USTOA) Robert Bob Whitely, among others in the sector who attended the videoconference, held in Havana hotel.
Figueras said that if Congress were to pass legislation allowing Americans to travel to Cuba on vacation, at an early stage could nearly two million. The Cuban official also told sales representatives and U.S. operators that while Americans can not enjoy tourism in Cuba, one in ten tourists arriving to visit the Caribbean island, where he said "no drugs, no vices, nor kidnapping, or crimes against tourists. "
They could receive nearly half a million cruise passengers
During the meeting, the vice president of the American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA), Paul Ruden, said that 1.8 million Americans may come each year, distributed as follows: 835,000 would be tourists, 480,000 cruise passengers and 482,000 Cuban-Americans.
Regarding the loss of millions, of these 1,100 million dollars (about 767,000 million) that is losing the sector, broken down according Figueras in 600 million dollars (419 million) that airlines lose 300 million dollars (209 million) in the case of agencies, besides other related quantities, for example, with food imports.
There was also a question and answer session during which the U.S. asked about the Cuban tourism market. Participated in the video conference, including U.S. politicians, Congressman Bobby Rush, Democrat of Illinois and Cuba expert Phil Peters of the Lexington Institute, based in Washington. Rush believed that the blockade the United States applies to Cuba "does not work," observing that "millions of people want to see normalized US-Cuba relations.
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