Progress of Cuban Economy Analyzed by Council of Ministers

Havana - The Cuban Council of Ministers analyzed critically the progress of the national economy, the execution of the 2018 budget, foreign investment and programs in various regions of the country, reports today Granma daily.

At the meeting held on Thursday, President Miguel Díaz Canel referred to the real upsurge of the blockade imposed by the United States government against Cuba, with a strong financial persecution and measures that has a negative impact on the national economy.

The president reiterated the importance of more national production in these conditions, more savings, efficiency and control of resources.

During the analysis of the economic results in the first semester of 2019, the Cuban president commented that the shortage of basic products during the initial months of the year, was not only due to the lack of financing, but 'to the effects of the import mentality of our entrepreneurs, which 'accommodates, removes responsibilities and restrains the initiative'.

The President, according to Granma, recommended to work with objectivity and realism, from the economic context of Cuba and reiterated the call to make viable everything related to foreign direct investment, exports and investments provided in the Plan of the Economy that generate income .

In these debates, Minister of Finance and Prices, Meisi Bolaños Weiss, offered details on last year's behavior of the budget, a topic to be debated by the National Assembly of People's Power (parliament) at its next ordinary meeting.

Meanwhile, the Minister of Economy and Planning, Alejandro Gil Fernández, highlighted the performance of the Cuban economy which in the first six months of 2019 shows a positive outcome in the trade balance.

He noted that the performance of the Cuban economy during the first half of the year has been marked by a tense financial situation, but that there are signs of vitality that allow us to foresee growth at the end of this year, reason why it is necessary to maximize the domestic potential.

Gil Fernandez said that for the second semester, it is required to deepen the search for national solutions to support offers to the population, as well as enhance local development projects, advance in municipal self-sufficiency and encourage the increase of exports.

Another speech in charge of Rodrigo Malmierca Díaz, Minister of Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment, reported that during last year, 38 new investments were approved, nine of them in the Mariel Special Development Zone.

In general, about 200 foreign investment businesses are active in various sectors, said the Minister, who addressed the issue of foreign investment, external credits and exports in the Ministries of Agriculture and the Food Industry.

On this matter, the Granma report indicates that President Diaz-Canel insisted on the importance of not obstructing the approval of foreign investment projects, since sometimes opportunities are shelved, either due to bureaucracy or ignorance.

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