Minister Ploumen on trade mission to Cuba

Minister for Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade Lilianne Ploumen is to lead a Dutch trade mission to Cuba from 10 to 14 January 2016. The participants will include sports and cultural organisations as well as businesses and knowledge institutions.

Cuba and the Netherlands signed an agreement in 2014 on cooperation in the areas of tourism, logistics, water/maritime issues, agriculture/food, health/biotechnology and renewable energy. The arrangements will be fleshed out during the upcoming mission. ‘Our expertise can help Cuba move forward,’ said Ms Ploumen. ‘At the same time, there are good opportunities for Dutch companies in Cuba to do business and add value through corporate social responsibility.’

A baseball event will be held during the mission, to highlight the special ties that exist between the Netherlands and Cuba through this sport. Feyenoord football club and the Royal Dutch Football Association will also organise clinics, together with local organisations.

Ms Ploumen has high expectations for the mission. ‘Several Dutch businesses are already active in Cuba and are making preparations to expand,’ she said. ‘Other companies want to look into the commercial possibilities now that Cuba’s relations with the United States are rapidly improving. Cuba also has a lot to offer in terms of culture and sports. So I’m pleased that those sectors are interested in exploring opportunities for working together.’

The mission will focus particular attention on Cuba’s ties with businesses and knowledge institutions in the countries and municipalities of the Caribbean parts of the Kingdom.