Brief Background: Fidel CASTRO led a rebel army to victory in 1959, and his guiding vision has defined Cuba’s Communist revolution while his iron will has held the country together for more than four decades. CASTRO brought Cuba onto the world stage by inviting Soviet support in the 1960s, inciting revolutionary movements throughout Latin America and Africa in the 1970s, and sending his army to fight in Angola in the 1980s. At home, Havana provided Cubans with high levels of healthcare, education, and social security while suppressing the Roman Catholic Church and arresting political dissidents. Cuba is slowly recovering from severe economic recession following the withdrawal of former-Soviet subsidies, worth $4billion-$6 billion per year, in 1990. Location/Land: Caribbean, island between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, south of Florida. Cuba is slightly smaller than Pennsylvania when your compare land sizes.
Their climate is tropical; moderated by trade winds; dry season (November to April), rainy season (May to October).
Cuba is also the largest country in the Caribbean. Natural resources: cobalt, nickel, iron ore, copper, manganese, salt, timber, silica, petroleum Land use: which was established in 1993 to be: Population: 11,096,395 established in July of 1999. Ethnic groups: mulatto 51%, white 37%, black 11%, Chinese 1% Religions: nominally 85% Roman Catholic prior to CASTRO assuming power; Protestants, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Jews, and Santeria are also represented Cuban Independence: May 20, 1902 (from Spain Dec 10, 1898; Governed by the US 1898 – 1902) National holiday: Rebellion Day, July 26 (1953); Liberation Day, Jan 1 (1959) Economic overview: The state plays the primary role in the economy and controls practically all foreign trade. The government has undertaken several reforms in recent years to stem excess liquidity, increase labor incentives, and alleviate serious shortages of food, consumer goods, and services. The liberalized agricultural markets introduced in October 1994, at which state and private farmers sell above-quota production at unrestricted prices, have broadened legal consumption alternatives and reduced the black market prices.
In the early 1900's, Cuba was a stomping ground for many of the rich and famous from the United States. Many famous movies stars and wealthy business entrepreneurs spend their vacations there along with a substantial amount of money. Trade and commerce between the United States and Cuba flowed freely and abundantly. Even with the Dictatorship-like regime of Batista, the countries benefited from ...
Government efforts to lower subsidies to unprofitable enterprises caused the semi-official exchange rate for the Cuban peso to move from a peak of 120 to the dollar in the summer of 1994 to 21 to the dollar by 1998s yearend. New taxes introduced in 1996 helped drive down the number of self-employed workers from 208,000 in 1996 to 155,000 by July 1998. Havana announced in 1995 that GDP declined by 35% from 1989-93, as the result of lost Soviet aid and domestic inefficiencies. The drop in GDP supposedly halted in 1994, when Cuba reported 0.7% growth, followed by increases of 2.5% in 1995 and 7.8% in 1996. Growth slowed in 1997 and 1998 to 2.5% and 1.2% respectively. Export earnings declined 22% in 1998, to $1.4 billion, the result of lower sugar export volume and lower world prices for nickel and sugar.
Import expenditures also fell 15% to $3.0 billion, in part due to lower world oil prices. Tourism and remittances play a key role in foreign currency earnings. Living standards for the average Cuban remain at a depressed level compared with 1990. purchasing power parity$17.3 billion 1998 estimation real growth rate: 1.2% 1998 estimation per capita: purchasing power parity$1,560 1998 estimation composition by sector: estimated in 1997