FINAL MINUTES OF THE 2ND HIGH LEVEL CUBA-VENEZUELA ECONOMIC UNION MEETING

THE 2nd High Level Cuba-Venezuela Economic Union Meeting, established under the auspices of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA), signed by the presidents of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela and the Republic of Cuba on December 14, 2004 in the city of Havana, Cuba, took place in the city of Caracas, Venezuela from July 15 -19, 2010.


The Venezuelan delegation was presided over by Vice President Rafael Ramírez Carreño, People’s Power minister for energy and oil, and the Cuban delegation was headed by Ricardo Cabrisas Ruiz, vice president of the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Cuba.

Participating as members of the Venezuelan delegation were: Ricardo Menéndez, People’s Power minister for science, technology and intermediate industries; José Khan, People’s Power minister for basis industries and mining, and Nicolás Maduro, People’s Power minister for foreign affairs. The Cuban delegation comprised: Rodrigo Malmierca Díaz, minister of foreign investment and foreign trade; Yadira García Vera, minister of basic industry; and César Arocha Masid, minister of transport. Some 150 delegates from the two countries took part in the meeting.

The two delegations appreciated that the Cuba-Venezuela Economic Union constitutes an important contribution to the growing process of integration and the consolidation of relations between Venezuela and Cuba, sustained on the principles of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA); as well as that alliance’s new mechanisms such as the SUCRE as a payment compensation mechanism and the Grannacionales.

The two sides agreed to prioritize projects whose impact will contribute to the economic and social development of both countries, replace imports, support the comprehensive training of workers in the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, and complement production in both countries where the chain of production guarantees an elevation of added value levels in one or the other country and makes it possible to substitute imports according to the results emerging from the Map of Merchandise.

The presidents of the two delegations, with their respective technical teams, reviewed and assessed the 370 projects (73 for the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela and 297 presented by the Republic of Cuba), of which 139 projects were proposed as possible objectives to develop in the first stage of complementariness. These 139 projects are covered in five partnership schemes: one (1) Grannacional enterprise; thirty-one (31) Joint Ventures; thirty-nine (39) Twinned Enterprises; fifty-one (51) complementary schemes and seventeen (17) commercial exchange projects.

The projects that were not agreed by consensus during this first stage and others that may subsequently arise will be the subject of a permanent assessment into their possible inclusion.

These projects are in keeping with the comprehensive planning of each country and the geopolitical and united relationship between the two parties. In this context, the projects selected define rules of action with different levels of progress that must be organized in order to be tackled within a strategic working plan.

In order to facilitate the work that led to these results, five working groups were organized beforehand. A summary of the results of each one now follows:

1. Working Group No. 1: Light Industry and Trade

This group analyzed issues related to the following sectors: science, technology and intermediate industries; foreign trade; transport and communications; healthcare; tourism; education; sports; housing; and construction. It was presided over by Camilo Rivero, director of industrial studies at the People’s Power Ministry of Science, Technology and Intermediate Industries, for the Venezuelan delegation, and Angel Garate Domínguez, first deputy minister of the Ministry of Light Industry, for the Cuban delegation. As a result of the review undertaken by this group, forty-five (45) classified projects were agreed on, in the form of one (1) complementary scheme and fourteen (14) related to commercial exchange.

2. Working Group No. 2: Basic Industry.

This group analyzed issues related to the following sectors: the iron and steel industry and basic industries. It was presided over by Jesús Paredes, People’s Power deputy minister for basic industry and mining, for the Venezuelan delegation and Adriana Barceló, deputy minister at the Ministry of the Iron and Steel Industry, for the Cuban delegation. As a result of the review undertaken by this group, twenty (20) classified projects were agreed on, in the form of one (1) Grannacional enterprise, four (4) joint ventures, eight (8) twinned enterprises and seven (7) complementary schemes.

3. Working Group No. 3: Energy, Oil and the Petrochemical Industry.

This group analyzed the sectors related to energy, oil and the petrochemical industry. This group was presided over by Iván Orellana, deputy minister for hydrocarbons at the People’s Power Ministry for Energy and Oil, for the Venezuelan delegation; and Vivian Hitchman Miranda, director of Economy and Planning at the Ministry of Basic Industry, for the Cuban delegation:

As a result of the review carried out by this group, twenty-seven (27) classified projects were agreed in: nine (9) joint ventures, seventeen (17) complementary schemes and one (1) related to commercial exchange.

4. Working Group No. 4: Agriculture.

This Group tackled issues related to the food, sugar and agricultural sectors. It was presided over by Iván Gil, deputy minister of agricultural circuits at the People’s Power Ministry of Agriculture and Land, for the Venezuelan delegation; and Alfredo Hondal Delgado, advisor to the Ministry of Sugar, for the Cuban delegation. As a result of the review carried out by this group, forty-one (41) classified projects were agreed in: seven (7) joint ventures, twenty-one (21) twinned enterprises, eleven (11) complementary schemes and two (2) related to commercial exchange.

5. Working Group No. 5: Mining.

This group focused its attention on mining projects in the two countries. It was presided over by Isabel Delgado, deputy minister for investment promotion at the People’s Power Ministry for Basic Industries and Mining, for the Venezuelan delegation; and Eloy León Gómez, director of business and international relations at the Ministry of Basic Industry, for the Cuban delegation. As a result of the review carried out by this group, six (6) classified projects were agreed in: two (2) joint ventures and four (4) twinned enterprises.

Lists of the projects proposed as objectives to develop by the Working Groups and a table containing a summary of these results are appended.

The two delegations confirmed that current legislation in both countries will have to be taken into account for the execution of these projects. All established approval processes will have to be fulfilled, printing them out as swiftly as possible.

It was agreed to create completion schedules taking into account the real development of each project and the corresponding pre-feasibility and feasibility studies, which should be presented within 90 days. The fulfillment of these completion schedules will be periodically checked by the presidents of the two countries.

Delegates also stated the need to guarantee the financial sustainability of the projects signed, through income obtained through exports or the real replacement of imports. In the case of joint ventures, it was agreed that they should continue expanding their operational range within the ALBA countries until they reach the level of Grannacionales.

Eleven Venezuelan and 13 Cuban ministers will be responsible for the execution of these projects.

The two delegations agreed to present the results of this 2nd High Level Cuba-Venezuela Economic Union Meeting for the consideration of Presidents Hugo Chávez Frías and Raúl Castro Ruz, who will make the final decisions in relation to the projects to be incorporated into the complementation program.

In addition to these projects, the two delegations also reviewed the state of cooperation and economic partnership projects, adopting the necessary measures to promote their development.

Members of the delegation from the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela expressed their thanks for the attention received during their stay in the Republic of Cuba. The talks took place in an ambience of comprehension and understanding in harmony with the historic and fraternal relations that unite the peoples and governments of Cuba and Venezuela.

Presented in Cayo Santamaría, Villa Clara province, Cuba on the twenty-sixth (26) of the month of July in the year 2010.

For the Government of the

Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela

Vice President Rafael Ramírez Carreño

President of the Intergovernmental Commission

For the Government of the Republic of Cuba

Vice President Ricardo Cabrisas Ruíz

President of the Intergovernmental Commission

Havana.  July 29, 2010

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