Cubans applying for work in foreign companies must follow the rules

The rules governing the hiring of native workers by foreign companies operating in Cuba have been published in Official Gazette No. 40, the newspaper Juventud Rebelde reported on Tuesday (Sept. 29.)

The Labor Ministry regulations — identified as Resolution 20/2015 — “apply to mercantile societies, representatives, subsidiaries and foreign institutions established in Cuba,” Juventud Rebelde states, “although they do not apply to the modalities of foreign investment, as established in Law No. 118, the Foreign Investment Act of March 29, 2014.”


The JR article does not explain how or why the regulations do not apply to Law No. 118. [For the full text of that law, in Spanish, click here.]

Article 3 of Resolution 20/2015 states that the Cuban citizens considered for employment by the foreign companies “can render their services to the foreign entities only if they have previously established a working relationship with [a] Cuban hiring entity,” i.e., an employment agency.

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Those employment agencies are identified as the Agency for the Hiring by Commercial Representatives (Acorec) and Almacenes Universales S.A. (AUSA.)

Those agencies will then provide a labor force that can “perform activities involving advice, techniques, administrative and service labor, including domestic labor.” That workforce will include “able-bodied or retired persons with demonstrated abilities” for the jobs to be filled, “including workers from the non-state sector.”

That last reference is to self-employed workers, known as “cuentapropistas.”


Before applying for a job in a foreign company, the Cuban citizen must have “the authorization of the chief of the [Cuban] entity for which he works.” If the applicant works for a state-owned company or national organization, he must have “the express authorization of the supreme chief” of that organization.

Job applicants must sign a five-year contract with the employment agency. If after that period the foreign employer asks the worker to remain on the job, the contract can be extended for an additional five years. The extension “implies an increase in salary” for the worker.

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“The employment agency will pay the workers in Cuban pesos [CUPs], on the basis of the minimum wages approved by the Labor Ministry for the authorized jobs,” the newspaper says.

According to the worker’s “experience and qualification, his fluency in languages, the performance of his job under abnormal working conditions, irregular scheduling or other reasons,” the employment agency “may set a salary higher than that established for the job, so long as it matches a job of superior complexity and there is no wage incongruity.”

According to the Labor Ministry resolution, “foreign companies may not establish a direct working relationship with any person and must hire at least one Cuban worker for every foreign worker” they bring into Cuba.

The full text of Official Gazette No. 40, in Spanish, can be found in

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