While the Venezuelan economy is collapsing with skyrocketing inflation and chronic shortages of the most basic consumer items, Cuba’s apartheid Castro regime has been enjoying a cash boon as it siphoned $18-billion USD from Venezuela in just the past three years.
USD 18 billion heading for Cuba in three-year term
The cash flow included lending, donation and investment
Cuban economy did not wreck in the last decade only because of the input from the Venezuelan government. In three years only, USD 18 billion was transferred in form of loans, investments or grants.
The government of deceased President Hugo Chávez, and now the administration of Nicolás Maduro, never provided details of uncontrolled outlays. However, little by little, official data from Caracas and Havana have provided an estimate of the alliance paid in cash.
In 2008-2011, approximately USD 18 billion was transferred from Venezuela to Cuba by means of funds, loans and investments. Most of it accounted for payment of services and the onerous Bolivarian philanthropy.
The sum of money arises from data collected as part of a research conducted by the Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy (ASCE), based in the United States. To that aim, the official numbers in Cuba were considered.
“We don’t know how much is debt and how much is transfer (gift). The impression is that almost all of it is transfer and the debt, if any, is under very favorable conditions,” explained Luis R. Luis, the author of the paper, Ph. D in Economy and a member of the ASCE board of directors.
Most of financial flows to Cuba through 2013 come from Venezuela, yet the breakdown is unknown. “Some must be debt, yet the numbers do not show it,” Luis said.
A paper by the European Union revealed USD 31 billion of Cuba’s foreign debt at 2008. Venezuela would appear as the major creditor for USD 11.4 billion.
Under an agreement effective in 2003, Cuba supplies medical and social services to Venezuela, with a shipment of some 100,000 barrels per day of Venezuelan oil for valuable consideration.
Around 44,800 Cubans render services within the welfare missions started in 2003, according to the last official numbers reported in 2012. However, sources claim, such number is dwindling. Given that Venezuela pays Cuba with oil on account of professional services, in 2013, the Venezuelan government must have paid USD 91,000 per each person; or USD 7,600 monthly.
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