INTERNATIONAL TRANSPORTATION FAIR IN HAVANA
Business in excess of $100 million
BY IVAN TERRERO—Granma
four days the 7th International Transportation Fair
(ITF 2004) converted Havana into the headquarters of
important business in different branches of the
Perceived as the most important specialized
commercial market in
Cuba, the ITF 2004 provided unquestionable benefits
to the 73 exhibitors from 19 different countries.
The exhibitors made over 200 transactions, amounting
to $100 million.
One of these 200 commercial deals was Cuba’s
purchase of 50 new buses from Russia for one million
dollars. These vehicles will be used to transport
boarding-school students to educational centers in
the following Habana provinces: San Antonio de los
Baños, Güira de Melena, Güines and Batabanó. The
Provincial School Transportation Company in Havana
has already received 36 of the buses.
This acquisition will enable the company to lend an
improved service to students, and replace the
well-known Student Train which, for several years,
transported boarding students from the city of
Havana to those educational centers.
The assembly plant Transbus Industria S.A. signed a
letter of intent with the suppliers Commercial MCV
(representative of Mercedes Benz) and Busscar
Omnibus S.A. together with the Havana Bus Company to
start assembling approximately 255 buses at a rate
of 24 per month from the beginning of next year in
its workshops located in Guanajay municipality.
These buses will be used for urban transportation.
Over five years, this Brazilian-Cuban joint venture
company has produced over 600 Busscar brand buses,
using Mercedes Benz frames and engines. The results,
conforming with safety procedures, guarantee the
quality of these vehicles for transporting
passengers in urban city areas.
The Cuban company Metrobus purchased seven
articulated buses which will soon be serving the M-5
line, covering a route from San Agustín in La Lisa
municipality to Vedado.
Minister of Transport Carlos Manuel Pazo Torrado
explained that they are still seeking alternatives
to improve the situation in the transportation
sector, severely affected by the commercial and
economic embargo imposed by the United States.
Pazo Torrado emphasized that more than 70% of the
trade agreements implemented at ITF 2003 have
already been put in place. He particularly
highlighted the construction of two sea vessels of
the Catamaran type in Santiago de Cuba, using
On the last day of the 2004 Fare, prizes and special
mentions were awarded for the best services and
products. The Special Prize for Quality, the highest
award, went to the BMW-X3 auto from the Panama
Fifty-eight Cuban firms took part in the fair,
exhibiting their newest products and services in an
environment of commercial-economic and