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Daily Archives: July 6, 2013

El índice de desempleo general en Cuba aumentó en el primer semestre del año, periodo tras el que se prevé un decrecimiento de la ocupación estatal y una subida en el sector privado, según informó el sábado al Parlamento el ministro de Economía y Planificación, Adel Yzquierdo. Continue reading
Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro offered asylum to former US intelligence contractor Edward Snowden on Friday in defiance of Washington, which is demanding his arrest for divulging details of secret Continue reading
Stephen Purvis has returned to Britain after spending 16 months in a Cuban jail on false spying and fraud charges. He speaks to Colin Freeman about his ... Continue reading
… hear his hit 'Call On Me'. 'It's Not The Same Old Song' highlights 'Bang Bang' by Cher and a different song with the same title by Joe Cuba Sextet. Continue reading
At least 18 members have quit Cuba?s dissident Ladies in White in the eastern province of Santiago de Cuba. Top opposition leader Jose Daniel Ferrer has been accused of treating a black supporter like Continue reading

El Premio Nobel de la Paz, Mohammed ElBaradei, fue nombrado este sábado primer ministro de Egipto, tres días después de que el ejército derrocara a Mohamed Mursi, anunció el movimiento Tamarod, que estuvo en el origen de las manifestaciones contra el presidente islamista, reporta la AFP.

ElBaradei, exjefe de Agencia Internacional de Energía Atómica (AIEA), se reunió más temprano con el presidente interino Adly Mansur, informó la agencia estatal de noticias Mena.

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HAVANA, Cuba, Jul 6 (acn) Cuba's Adriana Munoz won the silver medal today in the 1 500 meters in the Central American and Caribbean Athletics Championships, based in Morelia, Mexico, until next Sunday. Continue reading
HAVANA, Cuba, Jul 6 (acn ) The Cuban baseball team trounced Curacao with a score of 11 runs to zero, to secure its ticket to the baseball tournament final in Rotterdam, Netherlands, against an opponent Continue reading
HAVANA, Cuba, Jul 6 (acn) Terminal three of Jose Marti International Airport will undergo a full repair in order to provide a more efficient service, Ramon Martinez Echevarria, president of the Cuban Continue reading
CUBA STANDARD — Hoping to relieve bottlenecks caused by Cuba’s top-down decision-making structures, economic reform czar Marino Murillo announced that new rules granting state companies more autonomy will be implemented before the end of the year. Next year’s national budget will include “first steps” to loosen the leash for Cuba’s tightly controlled state companies, Vice President [...] Continue reading
_ LA PAZ/CARACAS (R Reuters) - Bolivia offered asylum on Saturday to former U.S. spy agency contractor Edward Snowden, joining leftist allies Venezuela and Nicaragua in defiance of Washington, which Continue reading
HAVANA, Cuba, Jul 6 (acn) Miguel Diaz-Canel, member of the Politburo of the Central Committee (CC) of the Communist Party of Cuba (PCC) and First Vice President of the Councils of State and Ministers, chaired today the central act of graduation i... Continue reading
HAVANA, Cuba, July 6 (acn) The Cuban Parliament adopted a new maritime navigation law during the first session of the 8th Legislation, underway till Sunday at ... Continue reading
The Cuban deputies adopted a declaration during the opening of the Eighth Legislature of the Cuban Parliament, attended by President Raul Castro. The declaration read that Gerardo ... Continue reading
HAVANA, Cuba, July 5 (acn) Cuba will intensify actions aimed at achieving justice in the case of the antiterrorist fighters held in US prisons since 1998. The Cuban Five issue is priority for the ... Continue reading
HAVANA, Cuba, July 5 (acn) Cuban government vice-president Ulises Rosales del Toro stressed the need to mobilize, unite and develop productive forces in the agriculture sector through solid political ... Continue reading
Grass is greener... Tonight in Prime Time TV listings powered by Zap2it Enter your ZIP code below to see local listings. TV Listings powered by Zap2it We have a small ornamental pond, with a Continue reading
Edward Snowden has found supporters in Latin America, including three countries who have offered him asylum. But many obstacles stand in the way of the fugitive NSA leaker from leaving a Russian airport Continue reading
MOSCOW: Edward Snowden has found supporters in Latin America, including three countries who have offered him asylum. But many obstacles stand in the way of the fugitive NSA leaker from leaving a Russian Continue reading
Mr. Alejandro is part of a small, but increasingly visible, consumer class in Cuba whose appetite for luxuries, albeit modest ones by American standards, has caught the eye of the island's ... Continue reading
Diario las Américas estima que Yasiel Puig y José Iglesias tienen "grandes opciones a llevarse el premio al Novato del Año en cada uno de sus circuitos”. Continue reading
El turismo internacional dejó 170 millones de dólares a La Habana Vieja en 2012, parte de los cuales se utiliza en la restauración y en nuevas inversiones en el casco histórico de la capital cubana, informó este sábado un alto funcionario. Continue reading
El presidente de Cuba, Raúl Castro, presidirá la primera sesión anual del Parlamento que centrará su agenda en la transformación económica que tiene como objetivo actualizar el modelo productivo para profundizar un modelo socialismo próspero y sustentable. Continue reading
El hombre, un trabajador de la Empresa Cárnica, falleció 48 horas después de ser ingresado con vómitos, diarreas y fiebre. Continue reading
_ LA PAZ/CARACAS (R Reuters) - Bolivia offered asylum on Saturday to former U.S. spy agency contractor Edward Snowden, joining leftist allies Venezuela and Nicaragua in defiance of Washington, which Continue reading
MOSCOW - Edward Snowden has found supporters in Latin America, including three countries who have offered him asylum. But many obstacles stand in the way of the fugitive NSA leaker from leaving a Russian Continue reading
Cuban Combatant Antonio Almaguer Garcia passed away this July fifth in the north-eastern city of Holguin. Nicknamed Toñito served the Cuban Revolution in different fields. He was born in August 29, 1945 Continue reading
El avión presidencial venezolano podría viajar con el ex "espía" en su viaje de retorno de Moscú a Caracas Continue reading
Daniel Wallis and Deisy Buitrago, Reuters Saturday, July 6, 2013 11:42:15 MDT AM Photos of Edward Snowden, a contractor at the National Security Agency (NSA), and U.S. President Barack Obama are printed Continue reading
LATEST NEWS: Holguin: Combatant Toñito Passes Away LATEST NEWS: Cuban Parliament Targets Economic Model LATEST NEWS: Holguin Badminton to National Sports Games LATEST NEWS: Cuban Socialist Enterprises Continue reading
LATEST NEWS: Venezuela for Humanitarian Offer to Snowden LATEST NEWS: Holguin: Combatant Toñito Passes Away LATEST NEWS: Cuban Parliament Targets Economic Model LATEST NEWS: Holguin Badminton to Continue reading
By Daniel Wallis and Deisy Buitrago ,Reuters CARACAS -- Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro offered asylum to former U.S. intelligence contractor Edward Snowden in defiance of Washington, which is demanding Continue reading
HAVANA - Cuba's parliament is meeting in one of its twice-annual legislative sessions. President Raul Castro is expected to speak at the close of the two-day event about the status of his social and economic reforms. He is also likely to tou... Continue reading
6:20pm BST By Daniel Ramos and Daniel Wallis LA PAZ/CARACAS (Reuters) - Bolivia offered asylum on Saturday to former U.S. spy agency contractor Edward Snowden, joining leftist allies Venezuela and Nicaragua Continue reading
Según la radio pública estadounidense, el fugitivo no tiene otra vía segura para cruzar el Atlántico. Continue reading
Vecinos condenan operaciones mercantiles estatales Yasmary González Martínez 6 de julio de 2013 Sancti Spíritus, Cuba – www.PayoLibre.com – Numerosos vecinos de la villa del Yayabo criticaron este 3 de julio la corrupción imperante en las tiendas estatales que venden materiales de construcción, cada una de las cuales es conocida por la población como “el [...] Continue reading
La Asamblea Nacional de Cuba (parlamento unicameral) comenzó hoy su primer pleno ordinario del año y de la actual legislatura, que analizará la marcha económica del país y plan de reformas, en una sesión a la que asiste el gobernante Raúl Castro, según informaron medios oficiales. Continue reading
Parlamentarios cubanos discuten sobre alimentos, vivienda… y prostitución Publicado el Sábado, 06 Julio 2013 06:45 Por Redacción CaféFuerte El primer período ordinario de la Octava Legislatura de la Asamblea Nacional del Poder Popular comenzará este sábado a partir de las 9 a.m. en el Palacio de las Convenciones, luego de una jornada en la que [...] Continue reading
Cuba's parliament is meeting in one of its twice-annual legislative sessions. Continue reading
Guillermo Fariñas: «Ya los Castro son historia en Cuba» CARMEN MUÑOZCMUNOZCAMOS / MADRID Día 05/07/2013 – 21.47h El disidente cubano afirma en un chat en ABC.es que «la protesta social ha tomado proporciones increíbles entre los cubanos corrientes» El disidente cubano Guillermo Fariñas aseguró este viernes durante un chat en abc.es que Fidel y Raúl [...] Continue reading
06 de julio de 2013 • 00:34 Cuba firma acuerdos de cooperación con Holanda y Bélgica El gobierno de Cuba firmó el viernes sendos acuerdos con Bélgica y Holanda para promover la cooperación entre cancillerías y garantizar el traslado de convictos, informó un medio local. El embajador de Bélgica en la isla, Luc Devolder, y [...] Continue reading
El transporte en Cuba, donde los ajustes no bastan julio 4, 2013 Fernando Ravsberg* HAVANA TIMES — 50 años probando sin éxito diferentes sistemas organizativos en el transporte, debería ser suficiente para que Cuba impulse cambios de fondo. Los nuevos “reordenamientos” darán otra vuelta a la noria pero difícilmente lograrán un servicio eficiente. El último [...] Continue reading
Cuba's Public Transport System: Adjustments are not Enough
July 4, 2013 | Print |
Fernando Ravsberg*

HAVANA TIMES — Fifty years of unsuccessful attempts at re-structuring
its public transportation into a system that works should suffice to
make Cuba consider changing the very foundations of the system. The
"reorganization" being proposed today promises to be more of the same
and is not likely to yield the quality services aimed for.

The last meeting held by Cuba's Council of Ministers publicly recognized
that the country's transportation system "has been unstable, inadequate
and low-quality for years." The common Cuban who "hops on a bus" every
day has something similar to say, albeit with far less refined words.

"Updates" can help steer those sectors that actually work, such as
public health, education or sports, in the right direction. It can even
improve the tourism industry, which has seen much progress in the course
of the last 3 decades.

Cuba's public transportation system, however, has always been bad and,
in recent years, has gone from bad to worse. Truth is, it wasn't even
satisfactory in the days of Soviet aid, when there was plenty of money
and State subsidies to invest in it.

One of the many problems faced by the sector are the odd administrative
decisions of Cuba's Ministry of Transportation, which purchases buses
from China but demands that they be equipped with U.S. engines, as
though oblivious to the economic embargo that has existed for over fifty
years.

When the engine in one of those buses breaks down, Cuba has to buy it
from the United States. The purchase is conducted through a foreign
company and involves sending the product to a third country, where it is
re-shipped to Cuba. Prices naturally skyrocket and spare parts take a
long time to reach the island.

What's more, a whole series of meetings between the commercial
departments of the Cuban import companies and Ministry experts are held
before the order is actually placed. There are committees that convene
to evaluate one, specific aspect of the product, which refer the matter
to other committees designed to review other product details, which in
turn call on a third committee…and this process goes on and on for months.

All the while, the broken bus idles at a State workshop where, many a
time, it is scavenged for pieces that can be sold in the black market.
When the Ministry finally decides to make a purchase, more spare parts
are needed and the whole, interminable process of committee meetings
begins anew.

In this way, Cuba's Ministry of Transportation has at times managed to
keep half of Havana's public buses out of circulation, a remarkable feat
when we recall that the country has purchased a large fleet of vehicles
from China.

Organizing a functioning public transportation system anywhere is,
admittedly, a complex task which requires experts, large investments and
continuous subsidies. Such efforts, however, are only successful when
the system, at base, actually works, be it in a wealthy or poor country.

Granting a large number of vehicle owners licenses to operate as private
cabs greatly improved Cuba's public transportation situation, but the
government undertook this liberalization without establishing a standard
fare, the routes where these taxis must circulate and a maximum
frequency of operations, regulations which are currently being applied
in many countries around the world.

In the end, those who end up paying for the absence of official
regulations are the passengers, for cab drivers charge whatever they
feel like charging and circulate down the city's busiest streets at the
time of day they deem convenient, leaving other areas of the city bereft
of viable transportation.

I also hear that the government will begin encouraging the use of
bicycles as a means of transportation people can use to move around the
city. Vice-President Murillo even said that authorities "will evaluate
the possibility of selling spare parts needed to maintain the bicycles
at subsidized prices."

When I questioned the wisdom of removing bicycle lanes from Cuban
streets in this blog, I was accused of being hypercritical. Now, it
appears as though they will have to bring back these lanes, as selling
cheap bicycles won't be enough – you also need to give cyclists a safe
space to move in.

Some people make fun of this proposal, as though the use of this means
of transportation were a sign of backwardness. In fact, many developed
nations promote the widespread use of bicycles and have an extensive
network of bike lanes. Some major cities, like Barcelona, even have an
efficient public bicycle rental system.

Cuba, a poor country, would benefit considerably from a strategy that
availed itself of its various resources, creating a transportation
system that could harmonize State, private, cooperative and even
individual initiative.

To get there, however, the many import companies and endless committees
that have been stepping on the brakes of the State must be removed, the
private sector must be organized more efficiently, the cooperative
sector expanded and inexpensive, individual alternatives which the
population can afford must be sought.

Everything depends on how priorities are established. With what the
government spends on only one of the thousands of vehicles it imports
for use by its companies and ministries, a dozen electrical motorcycles
or hundreds of good-quality bicycles could be purchased.

To buy a new bus, there's no need to make an additional investment –
importing 10 less automobiles suffices. The government could begin by
suspending the practice of assigning vehicles to transportation
officials, so as to give them the opportunity to experience what their
less privileged compatriots endure (and think) on a daily basis.

Cuba's economic progress should not be measured on the basis of the
number of automobiles in circulation around the country, the fact there
are more luxury cars on the street or we catch sight of a Hummer in
Havana from time to time.

True success in this area will be to guarantee that ordinary Cubans have
the means of transportation they need to get to work every day and take
their kids to the Zoo one weekend or other.
—–
(*) An authorized HT translation of the original published in Spanish by
BBC Mundo.

Source: "Cuba's transport system needs more than cosmetic changes" -
http://www.havanatimes.org/?p=95875 Continue reading
file photo shows a TV screen shows a news report of Edward Snowden, a former CIA employee who leaked top-secret documents about sweeping U.S. surveillance programs, at a shopping mall in Hong Kong. The Continue reading