Monday, December 3, 2012

Odds and ends

  • Granma: Representing Cuba at the Mexican presidential inauguration: el compañero Miguel Diaz-Canel.

  • Trabajadores: A report on a Council of Ministers meeting says that Cuba’s economy is on track to grow 3.1 percent in 2012, lower than expected due to under-performance in the agriculture and construction sectors.  Plans for next year include further development of wholesale supply markets and expansion of self-employment (trabajo por cuenta propia) to add some new lines of work to the list.  Also, a “proposal for conceptualizing the economic model” is being drafted to describe the Cuban economic model once all the reforms approved in 2010 are implemented.

  • Café Fuerte: There are now 1.5 million cellular lines in operation in Cuba.

  • AP: Cuban authorities are ending a 2000 policy that added a 10 percent surcharge to U.S.-Cuba phone calls, which if memory serves amounted to 24.5 cents per minute.  The surcharge was imposed when frozen Cuban government accounts in the United States were being drained to pay damages awarded to various plaintiffs in court judgments against Cuba.

  • At Along the Malecon, Tracey Eaton continues to commit acts of journalism with regard to the USAID Cuba democracy programs; here he reports on $11 million spent on operations in Costa Rica.

  • Dallas Morning News: The father of newly elected Senator Ted Cruz of Texas was jailed and tortured by the government of Cuba – that of Batista, against which he fought in the Cuban revolution; he arrived in the United States in 1957.

  • Juventud Rebelde answers readers’ questions about the new immigration law, and will answer more next Sunday.

  • CNN: The first round of peace talks between the Colombian government and the FARC rebels, 11 days long, concluded in Havana and a second round will start this week.  More from BBC.

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