Published On: Tue, Feb 20th, 2018

Cuba prepares to end dual currency system

cuba-currencyHAVANA - The days of Cuba’s dual currency system are numbered.

President Raul Castro has given his clearest hint yet that the Spanish-speaking Caribbean nation will adopt a single currency.

“This issue has taken us too long and it cannot be delayed any longer,” Castro said in a speech in December.

Cuba has had two currencies since 1994, when it introduced the Cuban Convertible Peso, or CUC, alongside the Cuban Peso, the CUP, as part of measures to protect the economy in the wake of the collapse of its biggest sponsor, the Soviet Union.

The CUC, originally used exclusively for foreign trade and in the tourism industry before gradually seeping into the normal economy, is worth about 25 times the CUP and pegged to the dollar.

Cuba has said that the original national peso would remain and the CUC would be abandoned.

It has been long argued that the dual currency system is not a plus for the economy.

Economist Omar Everleny Perez told AFP: “The monetary duality is causing difficulties to evaluate the economy and competitiveness.”

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