Havana, Cuba, Dec 2.- Cuban economy grew 2.7 percent, slightly slower than the predicted 3 percent for 2011; it was revealed at the expanded meeting of the Council of Ministers held on November 25-26 in Havana city.
Cuban President Raul Castro presided over the meeting where he stressed on the need for Cuba to stick to its Economic Plan and State Budget for this new fiscal year, to avoid overspending amidst a world crisis.
Raul urged Ministers and other officials to adopt measures to help them plan according to its resources and needs, and to save as much oil as possible and to find alternatives to increase production; “the fewer resources we have, the better controlling and planning we need”
Among the reasons for not reaching the forecasted growth the participants in the meeting mentioned the unfulfilling of the construction and assembling plans for investments, and that producers couldn’t meet the expected figures in meat, milk, beans and bananas productions.
This forced the Cuban government to buy more food abroad than approved in the last budget; as an example they said the surplus in the expenditures for powder milk reached 15 million USD.
Considering the spiking growth in food prices worldwide, reducing expenses on this sector is not expected, but domestic production should fill in to cover basic needs of the Cuban population.
It was noted that the first step to draft the 2012 Budget was to have meetings with producers and customers, as well as with the Ministers and heads of domestic enterprises in order to asses necessities and potentials in each field.
The meeting’s participants approved the draft Plan and Budget for 2012 that will pass to the National Assembly in the next ordinary period of sessions at the end of the month for approval. (ACN)