Cuban leader calls for better results on economic front

June 10th, 2008 - 4:35 pm ICT by IANS  

Havana, June 10 (IANS) A senior leader of the Communist Party of Cuba has said the island’s socialist system may not last if the government fails to deliver better economic results, EFE reported Tuesday quoting the state media. “Either we solve the problems or we ourselves destroy the revolution that cost us so much blood and sweat,” Maria del Carmen Concepcion said Monday.

Concepcion is a senior member of the Secretariat, the executive arm of the party’s Central Committee, said.

According to the party daily Granma, Concepcion urged delegates at a provincial party assembly “to work with urgency to get better results in the economy, basically in food production, as well as to increase savings, efficiency and import-substitution.”

Cuban Vice President Jose Ramon Machado Ventura addressing the meeting asked “not to be afraid of (paying) high salaries and to apply experience wherever possible, provided that it gets concrete results.”

The government is trying to introduce a system of performance-based pay for workers.

According to Granma, the assembly insisted on the need to increase agricultural production, and farmers were urged to “exploit the land and installations efficiently, giving up irrational practices in favour of what is the most intelligent, advisable and functional.”

President Raul Castro, who succeeded his ailing elder brother Fidel last February, vows to improve the Cuban economy, but without loosening the Communist Party’s grip on power.

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