Cuba has experienced a surge in inward foreign investment since 2012. Data from greenfield investment monitor fDi Markets recorded a total of 33 projects, excluding retail, between 2012 and 2016. The country also attracted a total capital investment of $1.89bn and 7195 jobs.
Although the number of recorded projects increased by 550% during the five-year period, the number of jobs created has fluctuated. From 2012 to 2013 they increased by 60.65%. But in 2014 this decreased by 60.79%, followed by an increase of 550.32% in 2015 before they finally fell again by 39.02%.
Capital investment saw a decline of 60.63% from 2012 to 2014. It picked up again in 2015 by 735.63% but dropped again by 8.39% to $666m in 2016. Havana City held the highest market share, with 21.21% in number of projects recorded during 2012-2016. The second top destination was Mariel, with a market share of 18.18%, followed by Cayo Coco, with 6.06%.
The top sector was hotel and tourism, and top business activity was construction. All projects recorded were new, with data for 2017 out to April. In the first four months of the year, the country recorded eight projects. Compared with the same time period last year, this is an increase of 100%.
The increase in FDI into Cuba can be attributed to its efforts to attract at least $2bn a year. Previous US president Barack Obama and his Cuban counterpart, Raúl Castro, announced in 2015 that both countries would work together to re-establish diplomatic relations. Meanwhile, Cuba has also set out laws to help entice companies and drive inward investment.