Russia and Cuba sign agreement to boost tourism

Cuban PM Manuel Marrero

Russian airline Aeroflot will soon begin direct flights from Moscow to Cuba.

Sergei Vladimirovich Alexandrovsky, general director of Aeroflot Airlines, announced direct flights between the capital Moscow and the Cuban tourist center of Varadero for which plane tickets will be on sale over the next few days.

The announcement came as the governments of Cuba and Russia agreed to boost the development of tourism when representatives of both countries signed cooperation accords during a bilateral meeting in Havana.

The signing took place as part of the 20th Session of their Intergovernmental Commission for economic-commercial and scientific-technical collaboration.

Cuban Prime Minister Manuel Marrero and Russian Government Vice-President Dmitri N. Chernyshenko presided over the meeting in which Cuban Tourism Minister Juan Carlos Garcia briefed participants on the opportunities of Cuba as a tourist destination—a sun-and-beach site, with patrimonial, cultural and natural values.

Chernyshenko said that efforts must focus on the increase in the number of tourists to Cuba up to some 500,000 Russian vacationers a year.

Russian VP Dmitry-Chernyshenko

He added that the sector needs reconstruction and repair of hotels, modernisation of infrastructure and training of specialists in the hotel sector.

Cuba and Russia also signed a MOU between the local Tourism Ministry and the Russian Economic Development Ministry and other accords related to training and trips.