Cuba will develop an integrated digital platform this year in order to facilitate foreign trade operations, which will be linked to the simplification of procedures for the export and import of goods.
The Single Window of Foreign Trade (VUCE by its Spanish acronym) will provide information and will allow managing, through electronic means, the required approvals for the entry and exit of the products.
According to Vivian Herrera, an official in the ministry of foreign trade and foreign investment, the implementation of VUCE will go through several phases due to its complexity and should be fully operational by the end of 2019.
The establishment of the window, she added, responds to the commitment to trade facilitation contracted by the Cuban government before the World Trade Organization (WTO) and has the technical assistance of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTD).
This will mean an important step forward, as until now only the electronic single window systems at the General Customs Office and the one at the Mariel Special Development Zone were operating, Herrera said.
Streamlining foreign trade operations is essential for Cuba given its economy, with a high dependence on external links, which includes the acquisition of essential items such as fuel and food.
According to the Cuban Chamber of Commerce, more than 3,000 foreign companies participate in these transactions, and the purpose is to continue diversifying the market for exports and imports.