Ramon Espinosa, Associated Press
President of Sprint Corporation Marcelo Claure, second from right, and Cuba's Director of Mobile Services of Cuban company ETECSA Hilda Arias, second from left, sign an agreement for cell phone roaming service at the 33rd Havana International Fair (FIHAV) in Havana, Cuba, Monday, Nov. 2, 2015. The agreement will allow Sprint subscribers visiting Cuba to send and receive calls and text messages directly through the state company Etecsa, which has the monopoly for telecommunications service on the island.

LA HABANA — Cuba's state telecommunications company and U.S. firm Sprint have signed an agreement for cellphone roaming service, the first direct deal of its kind between phone companies in both countries.

The agreement was announced Monday at the International Fair of Havana, which this year features about 900 companies, a third of them Cuban. About 70 countries are represented, including the United States, with some 20 firms.

The agreement will allow Sprint subscribers visiting Cuba to send and receive calls and text messages directly through the state company Etecsa, which has the monopoly for telecommunications service on the island.

Verizon in September began offering the first cellphone roaming service in Cuba through the firm's Pay-As-You-Go International travel option. But the service is through third companies, not directly through Etecsa.