Cuba to reduce price of surfing domestic websites

Source: Xinhua| 2017-03-31 07:46:52|Editor: Mengjie
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HAVANA, March 30 (Xinhua) -- Cuba's state-owned telecommunications company Etecsa announced Thursday in a statement that it is to lower the price for surfing the domestic websites on Internet to "ease searches of websites with national content for cultural, informative or research purposes."

The new price for navigation on Cuban networks and the new minimum recharge value of Internet cards is of 0.1 CUC/hour (0.1 U.S. dollars according to official exchange rates).

Until now, the service costs 1.5 CUC/hour, with this cost remaining the same for accessing international websites.

"There are many existing websites and portals in our national network that can be used for schoolwork and to discover the cultural attractions of the entire country, as well as news from Cuba and around the world," pointed out Etecsa.

For a number of years, Cuba has prioritized information and communications technology as a strategic sector to develop the economy.

In line with this, Etecsa has committed this year to expanding its fixed and mobile telephone services, increase Internet access and ease commercialization mechanisms.

According to official data, Etecsa's Nauta web service had 1.5 million permanent accounts in 2016, with 15 million temporary accounts sold that year.

Most Cubans do not have Internet service at home but access it at 240 Wi-fi hotspots across the island in public spaces as well as around 1,000 fixed hotspots at hotels, computer centers and Etecsa offices.

However, in March, after a pilot program among 2,000 users in Havana, Cuba began providing home access to the Internet. Previously, it was only allowed for certain professionals, such as doctors and journalists, as well as foreigners.