Cuban Economy to Grow Two Percent in 2017
Cuban economy will only grow 2 percent next year following a 0.9 percent fall in 2016 due to financial limitations, said Economy minister Ricardo Cabrisas at the Eight Parliament Session on Tuesday.
Cabrisas referred to the prevalent tense situation stemming from the lack of hard currency, the failure to receive scheduled export-based incomes on time and the inefficient fuel supply, as well as the impact of the US economic blockade.
This situation places Cuban economy on a scenario difficult to revert in the short term, said the Economy minister.
In the proposed economic plan main growth is seen in sectors such as the sugar industry, hotels and restaurants, he said, other increases are observed in transportation, communications, power, gas and water supply, in construction, ranching, trade, manufacture, and minor repairs.
As to the Cuban energy production for 2017, the minister referred to over three million 500 thousand tons of oil and gas, representing a 4-percent fall compare to the estimate in 2016.
And as to planned investment, only 6.5 percent of the projects have foreign participation meaning that foreign capital is not yet a key element for the progress of the local economy.
Given the difficult reality for next year, Cabrisas, who is also government vice-president, stressed the importance of advancing investment projects linked to economic development, boosting the use of foreign funding offers, increasing control activity and rational use of energy resources.
Cabrisas also underlined the need to draw up a mid-term program to revert the situation of the food industry, avoiding the payment of salaries without productive back-up, strictly follow the monetary balance in the population sector and guarantee activities like healthcare, education and other basic services.(acn)