Starting July 1st, Cuban passports will have a validity of ten years, instead of the current six years, as announced by Ernesto Soberón Guzmán, the Director General of Consular Affairs and Assistance to Cubans Living Abroad of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Guzmán explained that it will not be possible to change the expiration date of already issued passports using a sticker, as this would complicate the immigration dispatch process and contravene international standards that recommend minimizing the use of stickers in passports.
In addition, the issuance of passports for Cubans residing abroad will see a significant reduction in cost. From July 1st, the price will be 180 USD/Euros for those over 16 years old and 140 USD/Euros for minors.
The cost of the passport issued in Cuba will remain at 2,500 Cuban pesos.
Impact on Cuban Emigrants
The new measures also affect Cubans who emigrated before January 1, 1971.
Before these measures, these individuals had to apply for an entry permit each time they wanted to visit Cuba. Now, there will be no differences between Cubans in terms of entering the country: all Cubans will be able to enter with their passports without major difficulties.
In addition, permanent residents abroad will now be able to stay in Cuba for a year, matching the stay time of their foreign relatives. This change responds to the needs of many Cuban families who have established their lives outside the country.Measure Extending Validity of Cuban Passport to 10 Years Comes Into Force
Summary of the Measures
- Extend the validity of the current passport from six to ten years for Cuban citizens aged 16 and over, and set it at five years for minors.
- Eliminate the requirement to extend passports every two years.
- Lower the cost of procedures associated with passports at consulates.
- Equalize the length of stay in Cuba for Cubans living abroad and their foreign relatives during their stay in the country.
- Eliminate the requirement to apply for an entry permit for people who emigrated before January 1, 1971, requiring instead to present their Cuban passport to enter Cuba.
These measures, according to Guzmán, have been received with a good level of acceptance and represent an important step towards a closer and more respectful relationship with the community of Cubans abroad.
As such, they reflect the ongoing Cuban migration policy and a response to the call of President Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, to move towards a stronger relationship among all Cubans without distinction.
Impact on the Population
In terms of how these measures are being carried out, Mario Méndez Mayedo, the head of the Identification and Immigration Directorate of the Ministry of Interior, clarified that passport issuance procedures have remained at normal levels after the announcement of these measures, albeit with a lower influx at the offices.
Guzmán anticipates that these measures will attract greater influx and applications at the consulates abroad. However, Cuban authorities are prepared to handle these requests efficiently, to maintain the agility of the immigration dispatch process, he said.