Economy grows in spite of hurricanes and US blockade
Campaign News | Thursday, 4 December 2008
Cuba is estimated to close this year with a 4-percent economic growth in spite of the US economic blockade and the destruction caused by three hurricanes that hit the island in the past few months, said a Deputy Minister of the Cuban Council of State on Wednesday.
The top-government official, Jose Luis Rodriguez, who is also Minister for Economics and Planning, talked about the issue in a full session of the 9th National Congress of Public Administration’s Workers taking place in Havana.
The Minister said the island’s capacity of resistance and the flexibility of its economy have been tested by the economic crises affecting the world today and the hurricanes that hit Cuba this year, 2008.
Cuba has been affected by the increase in oil prices by 53 percent and the rise in food imports, which will cost the country more than 800 million dollars by the end of this year, explained the Minister.
Rodriguez noted that the country’s leadership has been struggling to reach a steady growth on the economy so as certain measures that were introduced in the country during the special period (economic crises 1990’s) could be eliminated and also to increase the living standard of the population.
He made emphasis on the fact that the global economic crisis is going to have a direct impact on the Cuban export sector. He said the Cuban nickel industry has been already affected with a drop in prices from 51,000 US dollars a ton to 9 or 10,000 dollars.