Cuba has no plans in the works to deal with a potential avalanche of American tourists if the Obama administration lifts all travel restrictions, according to Maria Elena Lopez, a deputy tourism minister in Havana.

Lopez said in a news conference in Havana that Cuba was prepared for international tourism, but she did not specifically mention the U.S.

Rules recently expanded by the U.S. now permit Cuban-Americans to visit family members in Cuba once a year, to spend up to $170 a day while there and to send money to family members in Cuba.

Cuba's National Office of Statistics reported that more than half a million foreigners visited Cuba in January and February, a 4.5% increase over the first two months of 2008, when Cuba set a yearly record of 2.35 million visitors.

Canada is the main source of foreign visitors to Cuba, followed by the U.K., Spain and Italy. While Canadian numbers jumped 16% in January and February, European numbers declined by 11%.


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