EPZs in Cuba

Doug Henwood dhenwood at panix.com
Fri Aug 18 13:07:44 PDT 2000

"Export Processing Zones in Cuba"


United Nations

Department of Economic and Social Affairs

Document: Available from the SSRN Electronic Paper Collection:


Paper ID: United Nations DESA Working Paper No. 12

Date: May 2000


Email: Mailto:willmore at un.org

Postal: United Nations

Department of Economic and Social Affairs

Division for Public Economics and Public Administration

Room DC1-922

New York, NY 10017 USA

Phone: 212-963-4758

Fax: 212-963-9681


In a radical shift of policy, Cuba inaugurated in 1997 a number

of export processing zones (EPZs). Despite generous tax

incentives and an abundant supply of educated labour, investors

have not rushed to the EPZs, except for one firm which has its

eye on national rather than export markets. This paper argues

that Cuba's EPZs have failed not because they face a United

States trade embargo, but rather because employers must pay US

$1.50 an hour for labour that receives take-home wages

equivalent to only 4 US cents an hour.

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