Food & Beverage

Jan 31, 2016

Sweet Cuba

In 2011 the Cuban Government created a state company to manage all assets from the national sugar industry. Today, AZCUBA produces, refines, packages and exports high quality sugar from the Caribbean island.

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Sugar production is rooted in Cuba's history since the arrival of the first European settlers, back in the 15th Century. The installation of sugar engines was swift, which started a growth in production and shipment to Europe, to be sold to the whole world.

After centuries of intensive agricultural activity, the Cuban Government decided, after the Revolution, to nationalize the entire sugar industry and invest heavily into cane production. The economic embargoes that followed the Revolution didn't allow the country to reach its high production potential, but recent economic developments within the country, as well as the recent opening to foreign investment, have transformed cane farming and sugar production into a sweet business in which countries like Brazil are already taking part.

Since 2013 the sector has grown, enabling investments in research & development, engineering and human resources.

Cuba has a total production of about 2 million tonnes of sugar, and a huge part of it is exported to various countries, making this sector the seventh source of foreign currency into the Caribbean nation.

The most part of sugar engines have been built over 60 years ago, and require regular maintenance and repairs. The Cuban Government is searching for foreign partners to invest in engines renovation and installation of new production units. Brazil, through the industrial conglomerate Odebrecht, has become the first country to invest in the cuban sugar industry since 1959. The Brazilian group has started its operation in Cuba in 2013 by establishing a local company – Compañía de Obras en Infraestructura –, which has a 13 year contract and the goal to increase production on its engines up to 120.000 tonnes.

AZCUBA has identified more investment opportunities in the sugar sector and has made them available. AZCUBA Group includes, apart from their engines and industrial units, other companies dedicated to sugar and technology export, nationwide sales and distribution, logistics, and research centres.

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