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Cuba politics and economics converge at Miami Conference

Cuba politics and economics converge at Miami Conference
August 2, 2014
Vincent Morin Aguado

HAVANA TIMES — A close look at the island’s , both from Cubans
residing in the country and those living abroad, marked the second day
of discussions at the Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy
conference in Miami. An overriding conclusion was that the urgent need
for expanding the changes in motion requires political decisions still

Dariela Aquique Luna, a freelance reporter from Santiago de Cuba spoke
on the theme “Cuba, a new economic model or capitalize on the excitement
of Latin American integration?” She delves into the origins of the
so-called “Updating” process, seen as a political move attempting to
once again save the prevailing power in Cuba, taking advantage of the
progress of the political forces of the left in Latin America,
especially and Brazil.

Aquique, who writes for both Havana Times and Diario de Cuba, leads us
to believe that the current Cuban government will continue the political
game started by the “updating” process but without further reforms. As
such, she thinks it will be unable to unleash the country’s productive

Jorge Ignacio Guillen Martinez, a student at the of Havana,
described a grim reality experienced today in Cuba, based on a survey
revealing an apparent deterioration process observed when evaluating the
relationship between the changes, their direction and what should be the
objective of any economic reform: improving the human condition.

Over 75% of those responding said the current process of changes has not
meant an improvement for them. The existence of a deep anthropological
damage in Cubans is the main conclusion of this young man from Pinar del
Rio. He sees a pressing need to release the forces of stagnation in the
economy, promoting private ownership and business development, if they
want to rescue the society from its current debacle.

Dariela Aquique and Vicente Morín at the ASCE conference.
Another panel discussed the crucial issue of labor rights within the
economic changes, and the need for the contribution of independent Cuban
unionism. Also analyzed was the Mariel Port mega project, considering
the variables of its limited success thus far in the context of
international trade.

The day’s panel sessions then ended with a plenary and the presentation
by former Cuban diplomat Miriam Leyva, widow of the economist and human
rights activist . Miriam analyzed the transition
taking place in Cuba and relations with the United States. She opted for
a new political approach based on constructive steps that abandon old
dogmas, such as the Yes or No on the controversial issue of the .

The fact is that changing Cuba requires a continued exchanging of ideas,
expanding the ability of Cubans to learn about experiences beyond the
island’s borders, facilitating visits to the country by US citizens, as
well as training entrepreneurs. In summarizing, opening doors and
building bridges.

The XXIV Annual Conference of ASCE ends today with an emphasis on issues
related to foreign and the new legal framework as well as the
mass media and culture. Undoubtedly, the event is planting a seed for a
future harvest.

Source: Cuba politics and economics converge at Miami Conference –
Havana –

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