During the IX Plenum of the Communist Party of Cuba Central Committee, led by its first secretary, Army General Raúl Castro Ruz, analyzed were progress on the National Economic and Social Plan through 2030; the current performance of the Cuban economy; and implementation of the Economic and Social Policy Guidelines of the party and the Revolution for the period 2016-2021.
Minister of Economy and Planning Alejandro Gil Fernández informed members of the Central Committee that progress has been made in the preparation of the National Economic and Social Development Plan, in which three stages have been identified as the basis for macroeconomic projections: 2019- 2021; 2022- 2026; and 2027-2030. With this document, the country now has an instrument for planning in the short, medium and long term, he said.
At this time, the priority is on the first stage, for which six strategic sectors have been identified: tourism, biotechnology and pharmaceuticals, electro-energy, food production, professional services abroad, and construction.In the case of infrastructure, he pointed out that the National Development Plan focuses mainly on telecommunications and information technology, transportation, and logistics, as well water and sanitation networks.
Evaluating the economy, he pointed out that there are financial restrictions and inefficient compliance with the projected investment process.
In addition, exports have not grown at the required pace and foreign investment has not reached the levels demanded by the economy.
Given this situation, he said we must strengthen local development projects; promote local self-sufficiency; prioritize productive linkages with tourism and the Mariel Special Development Zone; and plan investments that generate greater food production, exploration, extraction, and production of oil, and the use of renewable sources of energy.
In this regard, Army General Raúl Castro emphasized that we must always confront problems with the intention of solving them, seek alternatives in the face of difficulties in each of the country's regions, and not sit idly by, recalling the country’s long history of struggle.
The next point on the agenda was a report by Marino Murillo Jorge, head of the Implementation and Development Permanent Commission, outlining activities carried out during the past year and the first months of 2019. The number of approved policies has reached 47, since March of 2018, he said, highlighting, in particular, 13 policies related to science, innovation, technology, and the environment.
The President of the Councils of State and Ministers, Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, pointed out that in the last eight years, 206 policies have been approved, which shows the intensity of the work.
Particularly during 2018, more experience and organization has been acquired in the Permanent Commission, as well as a greater participation from Central State Administration bodies.He insisted on the importance of including jurists in the preparation of policies and the legal norms that support them, which gives the work greater coherence.
Following these discussions, first Party secretaries in several provinces reported on their experiences related to food production, agriculture, and housing construction; and Raúl reiterated that we are prepared to face any adversity, and emphasized the potential the country has to move forward.