According to him, the economy had shown a high rate of growth in the period 2001-2008 as a result of the income generated by the export of professional services-- especially of medical doctors, a recuperation of investment in construction and transportation, and a rise in energy production. The high rate of growth reported by the authorities (an average annual increase of around 6%) is a reflection of the new methodology adopted by the authorities to calculate the gross domestic product (Note: A methodology that is unique to Cuba and differs from the one used in the rest of the world. Cuba has not published details of how these estimates are made). For 2009 the growth of GDP, on this basis, is estimated at 1.4 %, and a similar or lower level is expected for 2010. (Pujol, supra).
Pedro Monreal González, a professor and researcher at the Center for Research on the International Economy of the University of La Habana continues to assert that the Cuban economy requires a radical change in its current model of development. Pujol, supra. Like other economists within the Cuban academic sector, radical restructuring is based on notions of industrialization via export substitution, a traditional pre-globalization response of developing states to macro economic challenges. Yet it is also a position that may operate in contra to Cuban state policy of global engagement via ALBA. See Larry Catá Backer and Augusto Molina, Globalizing Cuba: ALBA and the Construction of Socialist Global Trade Systems, Proceedings of the 19th Annual Meeting of the Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy, July 2009. Monreal does suggest that both structural reforms (transformations that modify the organization of the economy) and economic reforms (changes that can be made within the existing framework) are both required. Pujol, supra.
In his view, three fundamental structural reforms would have to be implemented to bring about the revitalization of the Cuban economy, (1) the introduction of pricing mechanisms that would allow a proper calculation of the costs and rates of returns of the activities so as to have an impact on the economic processes, (2) the adoption of appropriate incentives for the individuals and enterprises to be willing to carry on with the economic activities, and (3) the establishment of mechanisms that will help turn around situations to encourage innovations in its widest sense, so as to transform the existing disequilibrium into new opportunities that bring about a solution to the existing problems. (Pujol, supra).
To American ears all of this might suggest a move toward political as well as structural readjustment, or even a suggestion of instability. But that ideologically motivated analysis would be dangerously wrong. What the reports do suggest is that, like the United States after 2007, national economists, faced with a financial crisis, have begun to discuss ways that the economy (and its direction) ought to be restructured within the confines of the political framework of the state. There is as much revolutionary potential here as in the now successful proposals within the United States for the purchase of General Motors and AIG, or the massive transfer of public wealth to private banks, both radical departures from conventional American political-economics in their own right. Understood in their own right, and within the political ideological framework from which they emerge, these summaries do suggest the possibility for flexibility in the structuring of the Cuban economy going forward without triggering revolution. For those who might think that economic restructuring is a golden road to political revolution in Cuba, these summaries serve as a reminder that it may well be possible for the structure of the Cuban economy to change, (like that of China after 1979) and change substantially, without requiring radical changes to the political ideology of the state.
Iguales dudas surgen con los incrementos reportados en varios servicios, en particular Ciencia e Innovación Tecnológica (10,7%), Educación (1,5%) y Salud Pública y Asistencia Social (3,4%), ya de por sí sobrevaluados por una metodología distinta a la establecida por los organismos internacionales. Esos sectores deben haber sido muy golpeados por la falta de recursos energéticos e insumos, en particular materias primas para la producción de medicamentos, y en la educación por la nueva política de reducir drásticamente las escuelas internas en el campo. Id.
Somos de la opinión que las reformas en una primera etapa tendrían un peso económico fuerte, pero no podrán dejar a un lado cuestiones políticas esenciales como la liberación total de los presos políticos pacíficos, el cese de la represión a los opositores/disidentes, y la ratificación de los Pactos de Derechos Políticos y Civiles, y de Derecho Económico, Social y Cultural, así como debe eliminarse la absurda prohibición de que los cubanos podamos viajar sin restricciones al exterior y regresar a voluntad, sin olvidar el derecho a la información –incluido el acceso a Internet- y de emitir libremente opiniones. Id.