MIAMI, United States. – Cuba’s Minister of Tourism, Juan Carlos García, announced last Wednesday in Moscow that Russian MIR cards, the Russian equivalent of Visa, MasterCard and American Express, will be enabled in Cuba before the end of 2022, according to the official news agency Prensa Latina.
“Ideally, a Russian client will be able to use his MIR card in the island, and we will achieve its approval before the end of 2022,” stated García during the presentation of the campaign “Unique Cuba” at the International Tourism and Travel Fair, in Russia.
He stated, also, that “to use this payment method we only need to program the terminals or the post where those transactions can be made.”
In addition, the official admitted delays in implementing the necessary technology that will enable the use of MIR cards in the island. He specifically said that the government would enable their use in October.
In April of this year, Prensa Latina announced that use of MIR cards would be allowed in Cuba.
According to the official news medium, the project was made known during a work session of the State Duma (the lower chamber of Russia’s parliament). During that session, Olga Skorobogatova, first vice president of Russia’s Central Bank, gave assurances that authorities of both countries were working to launch operation of this payment system in the island.
“There are several countries that want to cooperate with us. For example, Cuba is one of the latest projects we are working on currently. In other words, our citizens will be able to use their MIR cards in Cuba,” indicated the Russian official.
At present, MIR cards are accepted in Turkey, Vietnam, Armenia, Uzbekistan, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, South Ossetia and Abkhazia.
MIR card operations represent an incentive for the Caribbean country’s tourism, since it will offer Russian citizens more options when paying for services.
In recent years, Russia has become Cuba’s principal tourist-generating market. This has favored direct flights between Moscow and other tourist destinations in the island, among them Havana, Varadero and Jardines del Rey.
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