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Sex tourists flock to Havana and other cities in search of a form of escapism that is cheap, safe and exotic.
In Cuba, foreign men can command Cuban women and girls with the same ease used to order cocktails.
Trade relationships with the USSR and Eastern Europe had accounted for over two-thirds of Cuba's foreign commerce. placed an embargo on Cuba aimed at bringing down its political structure.
The country was forced to develop a new economic strategy and as a result adopted tourism as a basic pillar. The embargo greatly weakened, and continues to weaken, the Cuban economy by banning trade and investment in Cuba.
From north to south, Havana to Santiago de Cuba, amidst the decaying buildings, propagandizing billboards and food stores with empty shelves there are two things in Cuba which are always in full supply: prostitutes and sex tourists.
In a country with few employment options that offer enough upon which to subsist and an embargo that contributes to substandard living conditions for the majority of the population, women and girls flock to densely populated Havana in search of sexual employment in hotels, bars, restaurants and on the streets.
In Cuba, if you have no dollars, you have nothing." When asked if he controlled the women's business he laughed and added, "No, they control my business.
"I become richer by introducing foreign men to Cuban ladies than I would working any government paid job. It is more money than working in a store or anywhere else," he remarked.At a rooftop restaurant overlooking the Malecon, Cuba's shoreline which runs almost the entire length of Havana, scores of Cuban men can be found working as translators for the women and their potential clients in hopes of getting a small cut, perhaps a drink and on a successful day a full meal.On the streets some men remind the passing tourists that they know beautiful Cuban women who would like to know foreigners and also make the introductions between the foreign men and Cuban women.Cuban tourist agencies do a great deal of business with other tourist agencies in places like the Bahamas.Tourists from all over the world pre-book, and in some cases booking on the spot, tours that are thinly disguised weekend sex tours to Havana.