Cuba will focus its efforts during this year on promoting the implementation of its economic and social strategy, which today has the monetary order as its main action.
As announced last December 10 and effective this January 1, reported Prensa Latina, the legal circulation of the CUC -convertible peso- was eliminated and a single exchange rate of 24 pesos to one dollar was established.
Since that date -which marked the start of the monetary regulation process- excessive subsidies and undue free allowances were eliminated, and a modification in the distribution of income began with a general salary reform.
For the current, as listed in the plan for the economy, approved by the Cuban Parliament, the fundamental actions will try to keep inflation under control, to prevent it from being expressed above the projected levels.
Government authorities and analysts of the economy on the island have reiterated that given the existing monetary imbalance, it is necessary to implement measures adjusted to the current context facing the economy.
Initiatives to generate new jobs, fundamentally in the productive sphere, will be promoted. To this end, it is essential to encourage local development, with the aim of making work the main source of wealth and well-being.
It is a matter of eliminating the great limitations in terms of the purchasing power of the workers’ income and the existing distortions in terms of salaries.
Cuba has one million 400 thousand people working in non-state forms of the economy, some 618 thousand self-employed workers, in addition to about 3.1 million in the state sector, who will have to increase the levels of productivity and efficiency to raise the supply of goods and services.
However, it must be taken into account that this labor force is affected by demographic trends that indicate a reduction in the economically active population, which in the coming years will place a great burden on the employed.
For these reasons, it is in the country’s interest to have more jobs in the productive sector, rather than in the budget sector, as well as to encourage large investment processes that generate jobs.
Also within the monetary order, the established exchange rate of 24 pesos to one dollar for the state sector should favor national industry as a provider of retail and wholesale sales in foreign currency, which should grow by 30 percent.
The great aspiration is that all salaried workers will be left in better conditions than they are now, along with social security that will support families whose income is below what is necessary to live on.
As explained recently by Marino Murillo, member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party and head of the Commission for the Implementation and Development of the Guidelines, it was not possible for Cuba to advance in the transformation of its economic and social model without applying a wage and income reform in a general sense.
by Jeremy Abbott – American Correspondent – N/FSH/C