Barbados & Cuba Discuss Cooperating On Tourism

Minister of Tourism and International Transport, Ian Gooding-Edghill, greets Cuban Ambassador to Barbados, Yanet Stable Cárdenas at their courtesy call today. (Credit: S. Forde-Craigg/BGIS)

Cooperation on tourism was the main point of discussion when Minister of Tourism and International Transport, Ian Gooding-Edghill, was paid a courtesy call by Cuban Ambassador to Barbados, Yanet Stable Cárdenas.

The meeting between the two officials took place today, at the Ministry, One Barbados Place, Warrens, St. Michael.

During their talks, Minister Gooding-Edghill spoke about Barbados and Cuba having an “excellent long-standing” history of cooperation and strong ties, especially in the areas of health and sports.

The Tourism Minister also discussed with the Cuban Ambassador the need to update and finalise an air services agreement, which speaks to airlift between the two countries, and the development of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) in tourism.

“I am grateful to meet and have this kind of next-level dialogue. We certainly want to increase connectivity between Barbados and Cuba. In respect of an MOU in tourism, I think it would be very helpful and very useful, and I look forward to working with you on the way forward in developing this MOU,” Mr. Gooding-Edghill said.

Ambassador Cárdenas noted that Barbados and Cuba have common characteristics, such as tourism being the main economic sector, and it is very important to learn and share experiences about the industry. 

She highlighted that following the official visit of Cuba’s President Miguel Díaz-Canel, last year, it was agreed that the two countries would seek to enhance their relations in mutually interested sectors, with Cuba providing technical assistance in the areas of tourism and climate change.

“We have enormous potential to work together, and Cuba is open to having that kind of collaboration, and at the same time, to also collaborate in other areas that Barbados has interests,” the Cuban Ambassador stated.

Minister Gooding-Edghill and Ambassador Cárdenas also spoke about working together on hospitality training and teaching Spanish as a foreign language for workers in the sector; multi-destination travel; cultural exchanges; and the exploration of tourism trade shows.

Also present at the courtesy call were: Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Francine Blackman; Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc.’s (BTMI) Acting Chief Executive Officer, Craig Hinds; BTMI’s Director for the Caribbean, Graham Clarke; and Foreign Service Officer II, Disa Lewis.

Barbados and Cuba established diplomatic relations on December 8, 1972. 

Author: Sheena Forde-Craigg


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