Cuban rules to allow more small businesses spark hope and frustration

Cuban rules to allow more small businesses spark hope and frustration


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Economy11 hours ago (Feb 12, 2021 06:05PM ET)

Cuban rules to allow more small businesses spark hope and frustration
© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Havana

By Marc Frank

HAVANA (Reuters) – Communist-run Cuba’s decision to open more of its economy to small private businesses and individual initiative has sparked praise among many analysts and entrepreneurs but also frustration among some.

The measure announced last weekend expanded activities where small business were permitted to more than 2,000, from 127 previously.

Authorities said they would reduce the steps needed to open a business and allow individuals to engage in related activities, for example running a bed and breakfast along with providing transport from the airport and serving meals.

But many activities, from running an art gallery to operating tours, remain out of bounds, and funding and supplies are difficult to obtain.

The easing of restraints on private enterprise are part of a wider series of measures by the government of President Miguel Diaz-Canel aimed at creating jobs and better linking the private sector with state companies.

Other recent changes include a currency devaluation and cuts in subsidies. Experts say the reforms are forcing gre

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