Cuba Wants Expanded Cell Phone Service

HAVANA TIMES, Feb. 8 — Nearly a half million Cubans currently own a cell phone after the government headed by Raul Castro freed up access to them for its citizens, said Maximo Lafuente, vice president of the Cuba Telecommunications Company (ETCSA). The executive says the government has the “firm intention” to continue expanding the service and make it accessible to the majority of the population if the resources permit, reported IPS.

Currently, cell phone lines are only available in Cuba’s hard currency the CUC. Although the price for a line has dropped from 110 to 60 CUC (140 to 75 USD) they are still beyond the reach of those without remittances, tips or other non-salary related income. Nonetheless, the island’s network of home and public phones, albeit insufficient, is very inexpensive with local calls costing on a fraction of a cent per minute.