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Cuban retirees use toilet paper shortage as lucrative business opportunity

Aug 28, 2009

Cuban retirees are selling copies of Cuban Newspapers, such as Gramma, to deal with the toilet paper shortage and make some profit for themselves

Cuban retirees are selling copies of Cuban Newspapers, such as Gramma, to deal with the toilet paper shortage and make some profit for themselves

By now most of us are probably aware of the dreaded toilet paper shortage facing Cuba.  (For those that aren’t – Cuban officials announced last month due to tough economic times and three successive hurricanes that plagued the communist country last year, they may experience a shortage by year’s end.)

While a truly awful situation, one Havana retiree claims the shortage has created a lucrative business opportunity for Cuban senior citizens.  The retiree, speaking anonymously for fear of getting caught, says he and other seniors are currently buying and reselling newspapers as an alternative to toilet paper.

The process works like this – before dawn, they line to purchase surplus newspaper for 20 Cuban cents (.007 USD) from factories/offices that were forced to close due to the ailing economy. They then turn around and resell the paper to friends and neighbors for 20 Cuban pesos (.71 USD).

While one Cuban official has said the government will import enough TP by years end to alleviate the shortage, I credit the seniors for their entrepreneurship.

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2 Responses to “Cuban retirees use toilet paper shortage as lucrative business opportunity”

  1. Auto Title Loans - June 2nd, 2011 at 2:00 pm

    Hey, I guess you gotta do what you gotta do! Sounded like a great business plan. However, wouldn’t you think they would invest the money that produced the newspaper, into toilet paper?

  2. Vitt - February 7th, 2012 at 6:27 am

    A good business

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