Permanent Mission of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to the UN, United States

The Netherlands and Cuba to open dialogue

Minister of Foreign Affairs Frans Timmermans today had a first meeting with his Cuban counterpart, Bruno Rodriguez Parrilla. The two ministers agreed to open a dialogue about relations between the Netherlands and Cuba. ‘Cuba is undergoing reforms and the relationship between Cuba and the EU is changing,’ Mr Timmermans said. ‘That is significant not only for the Netherlands but also for the Caribbean countries in the Kingdom.’

 ‘We disagree on a number of matters, but we want closer cooperation between our countries,’ Mr Timmermans said after the meeting. ‘Closer ties and cooperation will benefit both Cuba and the EU member states, as well as encouraging the reform process in Cuba,’ the Minister added. ‘In the next few months we will be looking at ways to shape this dialogue and cooperation further.’ Areas the Netherlands will want to address with Cuba, both bilaterally and within the EU, include human rights, agriculture, water and cultural relations. The two ministers met in Santiago de Chile at the EU-Latin America Summit, a two-day conference on sustainable development which brings together all the countries in the EU, Latin America and the Caribbean region.