Why can’t people who leave Cuba exchange local bills anymore?Business and Economic News
The Cuban exchange company said the move was carried out in the context of a sharp decline in the tourism industry and the resulting shortage of hard currency.
According to a new policy announced this week, people leaving Cuba will no longer be able to change their local currency back to U.S. dollars, euros or other hard currencies at the official exchange rate.
The government closed the exchange station in the airport terminal, which allows passengers to exchange up to 300 U.S. dollars at the official exchange rate of 24 Cuban pesos to 1 U.S. dollar, which is about twice the country’s black market exchange rate.
That gives foreign tourists no choice but to spend the pesos they bought before leaving the country.
The state’s Cadeca Exchange said the measure was due to a sharp decline in tourism during the coronavirus pandemic and the resulting shortage of hard currency.
The competition for hard currency has intensified because the reforms abolished a “convertible peso” whose value was pegged to the U.S. dollar, which some Cubans could use, and opened new stores selling only in U.S. dollars or credit cards. Backed by hard currency.
Economy Minister Alejandro Gil Gil (Alejandro Gil Gil) said on Thursday: “We must recognize this problem in the economy.” Although he assured that the official exchange rate will remain at the level of 24 to 1.