June 25, 2019

Cuba to axe one million jobs to boost economy

Cuban workers receiving their instructions for the day. The glow of joy and dedication to the revolution is etched on their faces.

Cuba has announced radical plans to lay off up to a million state employees in an attempt to revivie its struggling economy.

In an attempt to lift productivity, the Cuban Labour Federation says that several hundred thousand workers will lose their jobs within six months, with more to follow.

Newswarped knows you are wanting to ask the obvious question that how can sacking 20 percent of the workforce be good for the economy in any country?

The answer is that Cuba is not just ‘any’ country. It has an estimated 5.1 million workers, 85 percent of whom work for the government. When we use the term ‘work’ it is in the broadest sense. As President President Raul Castro put it “We have to end forever the notion that Cuba is the only country in the world where you can live without working.”

Those laid off from the Cuban government gravy train will be encouraged to become self-employed or join new private enterprises, on which some of the current restrictions will be eased.

The Cuban Labour Federation says “Our state cannot and should not continue maintaining companies, productive entities, services and budgeted sectors with bloated payrolls and losses that hurt the economy.”

They go on to say “Job options will be increased and broadened with new forms of non-state employment, among them leasing land, co-operatives, and self-employment, absorbing hundreds of thousands of workers in the coming years.”

President Castro has said the state’s role in the economy must shrink The self-employed will have access to social security and will be able to open bank accounts and even borrow money to expand their businesses. Now stop the bus there. In the Cuban Sesame Street alphabet C is for Castro, Cuba and Communism. If Raul keeps talking about free enterprise being a good idea then it will be C is for Capitalism.

There I have said it now. Castro, Cuba, Comunism and Capitalism in the same sentence. How weird is that?

Since the Soviet Union turned off the aid tap 20 years ago Cuba has had to rely on Nickel for the bulk of its foreign exchange earnings. Prices for that have fallen in the last couple of years putting severe pressure on an already dire economy.

With imports being cut and mass unemployment about to be unleashed there is a real possibility that for the first time in 50 years the wiff of revolution might be in the air again.

What Cuba really needs is a lifting of the United States trade embargo. For a supposedly Christian Country, the United States has to be one of the most unforgiving on the planet. Cuba needs the foreign investment, tourism and trade that the US can offer, but the US is not interested as long as the name plate on the Presidents door spells C-A-S-T-R-O.

“Viva la Revolution – you are sacked!” It might just get the masses stirred up in the wrong way. Interesting times for Castro Bros inc.