Havana, Dec 22 (ACN) Cuba closed 2006 with 12,5 percent growth of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP), the highest such indicator in Latin America and the Caribbean this year, said Economy and Planning Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez.
In his annual report to the Cuban Parliament's 8th Ordinary Session, underway in Havana with the presence of Cuban Vice President Raul Castro, Rodriguez explained that the economic growth has been the largest one reached by the island since the triumph of the Cuban Revolution in 1959. He said the achievement is the result of efforts by the Cuban people to boost the national energy program known as the Energy Revolution and to further develop investment that guarantee major production lines and services.
The Cuban GDP growth is well over the 5,3 percent economic increase of the region as reported by the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (CEPAL), said the Cuban economy minister. He said some of the factors that helped increase the island's economic indicator included the production of goods and the development of services, as well as the saving of energy, the purchase of more than 29 domestic electric appliances
and equipment, which also contributed to improve the quality of life of the population.
The Cuban GDP can be compared to any other around the world, though it also adds a value to major social services, such as education and public health, which are offered free of charge here, in contrast to capitalist countries where such services are sold as any other merchandise.
Cuba does not give false or manipulated statistics with electoral aims, said Jose Luis Rodriguez and noted that this year's economic growth proves the gradual recovery of Cuban economy, which increased 5,4 percent in 2004, and reached up to 11,8 percent in 2005.