HAVANA, Oct. 19 (Xinhua) -- Cuba will seek to attract foreign investment with a new business portfolio to be unveiled at the International Trade Fair of Havana (FIHAV 2016) scheduled for between Oct. 31 and Nov. 4.
Cuba's Minister of Foreign Trade and Investment, Rodrigo Malmierca, said the Caribbean nation has updated its business opportunities to include the largest number of projects for foreign investment.
Malmierca said the business portfolio added new proposals under a recently approved foreign investment law and included all priority sectors for the island, including tourism, renewable energy, oil exploration, food imports and nickel mining.
"This year's trade and business fair will show the trust and consolidation that foreign investors have in the Cuban market, through the participation of companies from 75 countries and 15 high-level delegations, including ministers," Malmierca said at a press conference with local media.
The minister also said that a number of investment opportunities have been withdrawn from the portfolio, as these were already under negotiation and close to being finalized.
FIHAV 2016 will be the largest of its kind in terms of exhibition area. It will extend over 18,400 square meters, about 2,000 more than last year, in a convention center on the outskirts of Havana.
"Our main business and trade partners will have greater representation at this year's fair, a sign that our market is one of the most important in the region," he said.
The fair will also host the first ever Cuban business opportunity forum, an event which will be inaugurated by Malmierca and aims to provide businessmen with information about foreign investment on the island and networking with local partners.
"This forum is a real opportunity to nail down important trade deals for Cuba and to increase future foreign investment in the island," added the minister.
A new law on foreign investment was approved in 2014 in order to provide a favorable economic and investment environment for companies to set up joint ventures in the island.
Another flagship project of Cuba, the Special Economic Development Zone of Mariel, 45 kilometers west of Havana, will be displayed to foreign participants during the fair to increase investment in the area, which is yet to meet its full potential.