HAVANA TIMES – The Council of Ministers of Cuba decided at its current meeting to open up the retail sale of new and used motorcycles, cars, vans and minibuses. Cubans with well-off relatives in the United States and other countries will be a considerable percentage of those able to take advantage of the relaxing of restrictions.
The new legal norms will be published in the coming days in the Official Gazette, giving start to a gradual liberalizing of the vehicle sales, with first priority of available cars going to those who currently have the previously required letters of authorization but whose purchase was never possible.
Retail prices at the state dealerships entrusted with the vehicle sales will be set at market prices and possible purchasers include Cuban citizens and foreigners residing in the country as well as foreign legal entities and diplomats.
The new policy supersedes the letter of authorization needed from the Ministry of Transport, but maintains the standards of transfer of ownership and the prohibition on state or foreign companies selling directly to Cuban and foreign individuals.
In addition, individuals still cannot import motor vehicles on their own. The only ones authorized to do so are State import companies and the diplomatic corps.
According to the note, the government will also prioritize bicycle sales on the retail market , offering them at prices “without a revenue generating objective.”