Cuba in search of own economic path

09:49, January 11, 2011      

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The path towards economic reform in Cuba has taken off. The country's ruling party and people are searching for a development model that best suits their realities.

In our series on Cuba's Economic reform today, we are going to hear from top-ranking Cuban officials and what they think about the country's economic transition.

The Cuban people have been debating draft guidelines on economic and social policy since the end of last year. Contrary to foreign media coverage which refers to the process as reform, the Cuban leaders refer to it as "Change, Transformation" or "Economic Measures." In an exclusive interview with CCTV, Ricardo Cabrisas, Vice President of the Cuban Council of Ministers, pointed out that a planned economy is the main character for the change.

Ricardo Cabrisas, Vice President of Cuban Council of Ministers, said, "It should be pointed out that the update doesn't mean yielding to the market. The major character for Cuba's change of its socialist economy is planned rather than a free market economy. It should be realized that a planned economy is very promising. We are discussing about it and have achieved some milestone results."

According to Marcos Rodriguez, the deputy Foreign Minister, the Cuban Communist Party and people are holding a discussion on about 200 draft guidelines for the country's economic and social policy, covering all the major economic problems facing the country.

He said, "We are not only discussing it. We are also making sure that the people are benefiting from the process. We should let the people be a part of it."

Cuban leader Raul Castro pointed out at a national gathering last year that this year's Sixth National Congress of the Cuban Communist Party will set the tone for Cuba's economic future. Raul said that to carry on with the country's revolution, the country must implement economic reform measures listed in the draft plan for social and economic policies. He called on Cuban Communist Party members to change their mindset and accept privatization of enterprises. He said they should have no prejudice towards any new economic form.

An article published in Cuba's official party newspaper says the country bid farewell to the past year among the revolution of revolutions. It says the year 2011 poses great challenges for the country, but Cuba will stick to the path of economic reform nonetheless and emerge as a brand new country.

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