Cuba: B-4 visa, including the classes of persons to which it is issued; requirements and procedures to obtain (2017-January 2019) [CUB106230.FE]

Research Directorate, Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, Ottawa

1. Overview

Information on B4 visas issued by Cuban authorities was scarce among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate within the time constraints of this Response.

In an application for a visa to travel to Cuba, available on the website of the Cuban diplomatic representation in the US, the diplomatic visa is identified as visa “B” (Cuba n.d.a). The websites for Cuban diplomatic representation in Canada and in Mexico indicate, among the consular services offered, the issuance of diplomatic visas “B1 … B6” (Cuba n.d.b; Cuba 5 Jan. 2018, ellipsis in original). Similarly, Conexión Cubana, a website that provides information on Cuba, states that there are six types of diplomatic visas for foreign nationals travelling to Cuba, namely visas B1, B2, B3, B4, B5 and B6 (Conexión Cubana n.d.). According to the same source, the B-4 visa is issued to foreign nationals who are foreign officials, but who are not diplomatic representatives, and who travel to Cuba as part of an official mission from their government and stay for the duration of the mission (Conexión Cubana n.d.). Corroborating information could not be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate within the time constraints of this Response.

2. Requirements and Procedures

Information on the requirements and procedures to obtain a B4 visa was scarce among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate within the time constraints of this Response.

According to Cuban diplomatic representation in Canada and in Mexico, there is no cost associated with the issuance of a diplomatic visa “B1 … B6” (Cuba n.d.b; Cuba 5 Jan. 2018, ellipsis in original). Conexión Cubana reports that B4 visas are issued as requested by the authorities in the country of the foreign national (Conexión Cubana n.d.). Corroborating information could not be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate within the time constraints of this Response.

A copy of the application for a visa to travel to Cuba, available on the website of the Cuban diplomatic representation in the US, is attached to this Response.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim for refugee protection. Please find below the list of sources consulted in researching this Information Request.

References

Conexión Cubana. N.d. “Visados para viajar a Cuba.” [Accessed 24 Jan. 2019]

Cuba. 5 January 2018. Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores. “Relación de servicios consulares y precios.” [Accessed 24 Jan. 2019]

Cuba. N.d.a. Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores. “Application for Visa for Travel to Cuba/Aplicación de visas para vajar a Cuba.” [Accessed 21 Jan. 2019]

Cuba. N.d.b. Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores. “Listado de Aranceles Consulares.” [Accessed 24 Jan. 2019]

Additional Sources Consulted

Oral sources: associate professor whose research areas include migration and Cuba; Cuba – consulate in Montreal, consulate in Toronto, embassy in London (Cuba Tourist Office), embassy in Ottawa, Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores, Ministerio de Turismo, three legal aid offices, two government law firms; Cuba Tourist Board of Canada; director of a refugee law clinic in Colombia that has represented Cuban citizens; immigration law lawyer, formerly a member of the Cuban American Bar Association; immigration lawyer in Quebec who has worked in Cuba; International Organization for Migration; Latin American studies professor who published several books on Cuba; sociology and international studies professor working on immigration issues in Cuba; three travel agencies that organize trips to Cuba; University of Miami – Institute for Cuban and Cuban-American Studies.

Internet sites, including: Canada – Travel Advice and Advisories; Cuba – Ministerio de Turismo; Cuba Travel Services; ecoi.net; EU – European Asylum Support Office, Public Register of Authentic Travel and Identity Documents Online; Factiva; France – Office français de protection des réfugiés et apatrides; International Organization for Migration – Cuba; iVisa; Keesing Technologies; Law Office of Brian D. Zuccaro, PLLC; Rights in Exile Programme; UK – Foreign Travel Advice; UN – Refworld; US – Bureau of Consular Affairs, Department of State.

Attachment

Cuba. N.d. Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores. “Application for Visa for Travel to Cuba/Aplicación de visas para vajar a Cuba.” [Accessed 21 Jan. 2019]