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Cuba’s Tourism Boom Still Fails to Benefit Some Black Cubans

Cuba’s Tourism Boom Still Fails to Benefit Some Black Cubans
By Mel Abad (staff@latinpost.com)First Posted: Feb 12, 2016 06:00 AM EST

After Havana and Washington recently patched its long estranged
diplomatic ties, the city of Havana in Cuba is reaping the fruit of
having economic ties with powerful countries like the U.S. However,
according to Thompson Reuters Foundation, despite the development on
Cuba’s tourism, some black Cubans still feel the effect of racial
inequality as white people and those who are well-off are the only ones
benefiting from it.

Miguel Campuzano Perez, a former soldier and a musician, said, “The
black people don’t have powerful families, and that continues generation
to generation. The people benefiting from remittances are white; the
landlords are white.”
Despite the emergences of new hotels and restaurants in Cuba’s capital,
black Cubans believe that only those with money have the actual ability
to invest on such type of structures. They also believe that the
economic liberalization in Cuba has not worked for the benefit of those
who are below poverty line.

Havana residents believe that time has changed and discrimination plays
a very small impact on the inequality felt, but rather remittances,
migration network and the massive change in the economic structure. The
three factors are known to have a big impact in the growing gap between
the rich and poor in Havana.
Canadian University professor Isaac Saney said, “The vast majority who
left to live abroad happened to be white Cubans. They are sending
remittances home and their relatives can invest in small businesses.
This has led to an increase in racial inequality.”
According to Learning English, the surge of U.S. tourists in Cuba has
recently grown, and the Cuban tourism board has been unable to
accommodate most of these tourists with small number of hotels. As a
result, the government of Cuba has allowed its local residents to rent
out their own homes for U.S. tourists.
Despite the positive influx, Cubans are mostly concerned about the
preservation of its Old Havana. Questions about being able to maintain
its concept and not to let it overcome by the U.S. culture surround
their tourism business.
If worries about the influx of U.S. tourists are currently one of the
issues, this might also change if in the future, one of the two
Republican candidates’ Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz wins the U.S.
presidential elections. Apparently, both candidates criticized Obama’s
move to iron the country’s relationship with Cuba.
Juan Carlos Dominguez of Cuba said, “If Americans are permitted to come
to Cuba as tourists, it could be great. We are going to share with you
what we have.. The future is bright.”

Source: Cuba’s Tourism Boom Still Fails to Benefit Some Black Cubans :
US News : Latin Post –
www.latinpost.com/articles/114570/20160212/cubas-tourism-boom-still-fails-benefit-black-cubans.htm

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