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Russia sees major Havana fair as window to Latin America — official

November 01, 2016, 23:53 UTC+3 HAVANA

Deputy Minister for Industry and Trade Georgy Kalamanov marked the importance of developing cooperation between Russia and Cuba

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HAVANA, November 1. /TASS/. The Havana International Fair FIHAV-2016, a major multi-sector trade fair which takes place in the capital city of Cuba this week, is a window to markets of Latin America for Russia, Deputy Minister for Industry and Trade Georgy Kalamanov told reporters on Tuesday.

"Taking a look at the exhibition areas of Latin American states at this fair, we can clearly see that FIHAV for us is not only certain access to (markets of) Cuba, but also to other countries of Latin America," said Kalamanov, the Russian co-chairman of the bilateral working group for industrial cooperation.

"The exhibition is very important for us, we constantly say this and take part in it. The number of participants grows year-by-year. That is why our plans are to continue participating in its events," the Russian specialist said.

Kalamanov marked the importance of developing cooperation between Russia and Cuba. "The pace we have reached is rather high," he said. As an example, the deputy minister cited the development of railways on the island, which includes creation of infrastructure and exports of hardware, marking participation of such Russian companies as Sinara Group, RM Rail and Transmashholding.

"It is very important for us to engage in the projects we have outlined in the recent years - the development of the energy sector, supply and production of power engineering equipment. He said the two countries have recently begun discussing the development of power grids. Besides, Russia looks to cooperation with Cuba in the car-manufacturing sector, he said, mentioning deals with the KAMAZ truck manufacturer worth 150 million euro. The deputy minister said many Russian companies were ready to participate in projects in Cuba.

According to the Russian trade mission in Cuba, in the first eight months of this year, bilateral trade grew more than seven percent year-on-year. He said Russia’s trade surplus in relations with Cuba has visibly grown in the past two years.

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