The “automatic and cost-free” extension for the permanence of Cubans abroad remains in force

Cubans who have been abroad for more than 24 months will continue to enjoy the benefits of the measure that protects their stay outside the country, without this implying the loss of their resident status in the national territory.

Through his Twitter account, Ernesto Soberón Guzmán, general director of consular affairs and attention to Cubans residing abroad of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Minrex) He explained that on New Year’s Eve “the extension, automatic and free of cost” that supports the stay outside of Cuba beyond the time established by law, continues in force.

The measure adopted in response to difficulties caused by the pandemic, also exceptionally established that those Cubans who had been unable to return to the country due to travel limitations and border closures, could return whenever they wanted, even if their passports expired or not extended.

Although the control of the pandemic has been evident and normal levels have been resumed in air operations to and from the Island, the Cuban government has maintained its reach and warned about the validity of this provision that was announced without a deadline for its implementation. app.

On March 19, 2020, MINREX authorized the permanence abroad of Cubans with the aforementioned situation “until further notice.”

However, in October of that same year it was announced that Cubans residing on the Island, who after March 19 had not been able to return to the country before the expiration of the 24 months, could remain abroad until October 12, 2021, without losing their permanent residence.

In addition, the Cuban consulates restored the tariff for each month of extension abroad, after the announcement by Havana of a new plan to confront COVID-19 and the entry of most of the country into the so-called “new normality”. ”, due to the improvement of the health situation that the Island was experiencing at that time.

The provision, however, was quickly rectified, after the criticism and discomfort generated in a large part of the Cuban community abroad. Just four days after the charge reinstatement, the MINREX announced that it extended “the possibility that our nationals return to the country without having to carry out a consular procedure to extend their stay abroad, while this situation persists.”

So, Soberon explained that the collection of said extension established by law would remain suspended until “normality is achieved in terms of regular flights.”

In February 2022, the diplomat commented to the press that were not created yet all conditions” to change the setting. “Once it is appreciated that there is a change in the conditions that led us to adopt these decisions at the time, the issue of the future of these measures will be analyzed. For now, they are maintained until further notice with the aim of facilitating the return of nationals to Cuba, ”he reiterated.

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