With the participation of Cuban President, Miguel Díaz-Canel, a business forum
was held on June 17 with Cuban and UK business leaders to analyze projects of mutual interest.
The opening ceremony was also attended by Ricardo Cabrisas, a vice president of the
Council of Ministers, and Minister of Foreign Trade and Investment Rodrigo Malmierca;
and on the British side, Lord David Triesman, co-president of the Cuba Initiative Group.
For two days at Havana's Hotel Nacional, possible investment projects in several sectors to strengthen economic cooperation, were discussed.
Taking part in the Forum, Triesman strongly condemned the economic, commercial and financial US blockade of Cuba, which he described as an offense and humiliation.
In addition to advocating the strengthening of trade between the two countries, he noted that whether or not his country remains within the European
Union, the UK does not recognize any judicial litigation related to the activation of Title III of the anti-Cuban Helms-Burton Act.
While acknowledging the damage caused by the financial and banking restrictions imposed on Cuba by the blockade, which also harm the country's international partners, the visitor called for establishing greater ties.
The meeting was meant to expand knowledge about the two markets and agree on new projects of mutual interest.
Sources from the Cuban Ministry of Foreign Trade and Investment noted that Triesman's agenda in Cuba included meetings with executives from several ministries, including Energy and Mines; Transportation; and Tourism, as well as the Central Bank of Cuba.
He also visited facilities of the BioCubaFarma enterprise group and the Mariel
Special Development Zone.
Triesman defended the possibility of further boosting trade between the two countries in the framework of international law in such sectors as energy, food security and tourism, among others.
The British delegation, which included 28 participants representing more than 18 companies, heard several presentations about opportunities in Cuba in agriculture, biopharmaceuticals, banking, and renewable energy.
At the event, the British official noted that it is an honor to visit Cuba accompanied by representatives of major companies in the United Kingdom.
Some of the companies attending the forum were De La Rue Currency, Bird and
Bird, Salamanca Investment Group, Future Fuel, and Virgin Atlantic.
The Cuban minister for Foreign Trade and Investment, Rodrigo Malmierca, noted that the resumption of the Cuba Initiative marks a historic moment in relations between the two countries.
The Cuba Initiative is an independent non-governmental agency that supports programs to improve relations between the United Kingdom and Cuba. It was founded in 1995 in response to a request from the two governments in order to promote trade and investments. (Info from PL)