Cuba to buy sugar from the US?
According to local newspaper El Universal, Cuba has converted more than one million hectares of sugar growing land to other crops and the country is no longer producing sufficient sugar for its own consumption. A total of 70 sugar concerns were sutdown as production, which in 2001 and 2002 reached 3.5 and 3.6 million Tons, did not reach the two million Ton mark this year. Reportedly, the country is pondering whether to buy sugar from the US. Curiously, the Chavez Government has been buying plants and equipments from the Cuban Governemnt to "reactivate" the Venezuelan sugar industry. Sugar used to be the largest Cuban export and Castro made the sugar industry emblematic of his revolution in the 60's and 70's, forcing many Cuban citizens to harvest sugar during the harvest or "zafra" season. The industry had been criticized internally for the last few years for its dropping production and inefficiencies.