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Cuba-U.S. Telecommunications Business Forum

TlecomunicacionesThe Cuban government’s intention to continue promoting progress in the area of ​​access and massive use of ICT, and establishing bilateral projects, based on respect for the United Nations Charter and international law, was reaffirmed during a Business Forum of Cuban and U.S. companies working in information and communication technologies (ICT).

The event took place September 10 at the Hotel Nacional, with the goal of continuing to develop projects of mutual interest and address present and future challenges in the sector.

The inauguration was attended by Rubén Ramos Arrieta, vice president of Cuba’s Chamber of Commerce; Ernesto Rodríguez Hernández, deputy minister of Communications; Mayra Arevich Marín, executive president of the Cuban telecommunications state enterprise, Etecsa; and representatives from U.S. companies such as S3, C&W Networks, Liberty Latin America, Akerman, and Transfer To.

“We discussed how the process of computerization of Cuban society is advancing,” Arevich reported, “In addition, we reaffirmed the negative impact in this arena caused by the U.S. economic, commercial, and financial blockade of Cuba, reinforced with the activation of Title III of the Helms-Burton Act, and also by the Cuba Internet Task Force, which seeks to obstruct efforts by Etecsa for a more computerized Cuba.

“Despite these obstacles, we continue working on the development of infrastructure to guarantee that all national entities can implement the provision of services and platforms to improve the populations’ wellbeing and economic progress,” emphasized Arevich.

For his part, Eduardo Gandarilla, vice president of sales and marketing for C&W Networks, stated that his company’s principal goal was to “continue existing collaboration between the company and Etecsa. The challenge we face is to use ICT for development. This is what Etecsa is doing with the development of telecommunications infrastructure in the country.”


- 10 agreements between Etecsa and U.S. companies implemented

- More than 60,143,000 dollars in damages to Etecsa caused by the U.S. blockade of Cuba

- 6 million Cubans have access to the internet

- 5 million cell phone lines exist in the country, including more than two million with Internet access

SOURCES: Cuban ministries of Foreign Affairs and Communications.

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