The economy of Cuba is a largely planned economy dominated by state-run enterprises. The government of Cuba owns and operates most industries and most of the labor force is employed by the state. In 2019, Cuba ranked 70th out of 189 countries, with a Human Development Index of 0.783, placed in the high human development category. Housing and transportation costs are low. Cubans receive government-subsidized education, healthcare, and food subsidies.

The following tables and chart will tell the change details in last 5-10 years:

Cuba Distribution of GDP across economic sectors:


Here attached the last 10 years chart of Cuba GDP: (amount in billion USD):

3 Sectors of the Economy – Agriculture, Industry and Services:

  • Agriculture:

Agriculture is an important part in the Cuba's economy. It employs almost 18.11% of the total workforce and contributed almost 3.78% in GDP.

Apart from sugarcane, the chief crops are rice (the main source of calories in the traditional diet), citrus fruits (which are also an important export), potatoes, plantains and bananas, cassava (manioc), tomatoes, and corn (maize) . 

Major products in this Sector:

Citrus: Cuba is the world's third largest producer of grapefruit. Sixty percent of the citrus produce is oranges, 36% grapefruit. Citrus production and processing was the first foreign investment in Cuba's agricultural sector. The products are mainly marketed in Europe under the brand name Cubanita.

Sugar: Cuba was once the world's largest sugarcane exporter. Until the 1960s, the US received 33% of its sugarcane imports from Cuba. During the cold war, Cuba's sugar exports were bought with subsidies from the Soviet Union. After the collapse of this trade arrangement, coinciding with a collapse in sugar prices, two thirds of sugar mills in Cuba closed. 100,000 workers lost their jobs.

Tobacco: Cuba has the world's second largest area of tobacco plantations in the world. There has been little change in the country's output over the last 20 years and the majority of the tobacco and its products are exported. Cuba produces some of the world's finest cigars and Cuban cigars are a great product to important into your own country to sell. The value of tobacco and cigar exports is estimated at nearly US$200 million. 

Agriculture Subsidy in Agriculture:

Cuba has transformed its agriculture from a low productivity, highly subsidized, high input system to one that is more productive and greener, while removing subsidies. Urban agriculture, land reform, market reforms, and a complete reorientation of the university system all feature prominently in the policy reforms.

  • Industries:

Industry is an important part in the Cuba's economy. It accounts for 25.12% of GDP and employed almost 27.7% of the workforce.

Major Industries in this Sector:

Mining: Cuba's nickel deposits are among the largest in the world, extraction is difficult because of the presence of other metals in the nickel ore. Nonetheless. Nickel is the country's second most valuable export item (after sugar). Large amounts of copper, chromium, and cobalt are also mined, as well as lesser quantities of salt, lead, zinc, gold, silver, and petroleum.

  • Services:

Service sector is an important part in the Cuba's economy. It contributes almost 69.97% in the GDP and employed almost 60% of the total Cuba's workforce.

Finance: Cuba has a strong tradition of banking. Its first bank began operating in 1832, and by 1959 Cuba had over 49 commercial banks with over 200 branches. The largest privately owned bank in Latin America at the time was Cuban and two Cuban Bank reported in the Top 500 Globally. Additionally a number of foreign banks were located in the Cuban market including three US Banks.

Tourism: In 2019, the Cuban travel and tourism sector contributed directly 2.97 billion US dollars to the country's gross domestic product (GDP), showing a slight decrease in the upward trend registered since 2014. In 2018, Cuba recorded its highest direct tourism contribution to GDP of the decade, with over three billion US dollars. With its favorable climate, beaches, colonial architecture and distinct cultural history, Cuba has long been an attractive destination for tourists. “Cuba treasures 253 protected areas, 257 national monuments, 7 UNESCO World Heritage Sites , 7 Natural Biosphere Reserves and 13 Fauna Refuge among other non-tourist zones."

Top Companies in Cuba

Company NameSectorRanking
Habanos SATobacco1
Biocubafarma Business GroupPharmaceutical2
Gaviota GroupReal Estate3
Havana Club Internacional SABeverages4
Empresa de Telecomunicaciones de CubaTelecommunication5

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