President of Austria Urges to Encourage Business with Cuba

Havana, Mar 2 (Prensa Latina) President of Austria, Heinz Fischer, urged today his country’s companies to do business with Cuba during the inauguration of a business forum that he described as a bright opportunity to strengthen bilateral links.

“I’m certain that this forum will be a success,” he said while urging to increase exchanges for economic purposes, also taking advantage of technological breakthroughs in the field of communications.

He highlighted the presence in the event of experienced CEOs with business offers and common needs that should serve as an incentive to promote trade and investment.

Austria, as a partner, is a very stable, peace loving country with high technological development in infrastructure and industries, plus very skilled and highly professional workforce, he noted.

The business forum, running at Hotel Nacional de Cuba, was inaugurated in the presence of Cuban Minister of Foreign Trade and Investment (Mincex), Rodrigo Malmierca, and the President of the Chamber of Commerce, Orlando Hernandez.

Malmierca recalled that the two countries have longstanding shared interests in strict compliance with the principles of the UN Chart.

He particularly appreciated the continuous support of Austria in the struggle for the lifting of the US blockade against Cuba, which “unfortunately is still in force.”

As part of the business forum, the Austrian Federal Economic Chamber and the Chamber of Commerce of Cuba signed a memorandum of understanding to promote trade, investment and economic relations in general between the two countries.

According to the Vice President of the Austrian Federal Economic Chamber, Christopher Matznetter, the forum is being attended by CEOs and experts of 26 of the most important Austrian firms in the fields of railroad, the food and beverage industries, renewable energy and synthetic material-making for mining.

Also attending are representatives of firms devoted to international wholesale trade, the treatment of solid and liquid wastes, financial activities and the construction of technological equipment for brewery and machine tools.

He noted the increase of bilateral contacts can be mutually beneficial to diversify their commercial exchange, now including Cuban goods like sugar, organic honney, cigars and rum, while the presence of Austrian firms in Cuba is charecterized by the supply of high technology for the railway sector, for brewery and the industry of synthetic materials for mining, among other fields.

In Matznetter’s opinion, Cuba is an attractive business destination due to its privileged geographical location, the high education level of the population and the ongoing process to normalize the relations with the United States.

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