Cuban Scientist Praises Role of Science in Cuba’s Economy

By Jorge Petinaud

Moscow, Sep 30 (Prensa Latina) Fidel Castro Diaz-Balart, scientific adviser to the Cuban Council of State, said in this capital today that science and technology will play an increasingly important role in updating the Cuban economic model.

Shortly before leaving Russia, after receiving an honorary doctorate from Lomonosov University here in Moscow, Castro Diaz-Balart told Prensa Latina that Cuba has 1,200,000 professional graduates.

The country has 68 universities, 120 research centers, almost 13,000 professionals with science doctorates, 20,000 with master’s degrees, and another 300 high level specialists, representing considerable potential, he said.

Life expectancy in Cuba is 78 years for men and 80 for women, the child mortality rate is one of the world’s lowest, as a result of more than five decades of continual support from the State for this sector, the Cuban science adviser said.

Other mentioned strengths were an incipient industry for exporting software and an internationally competitive biotechnology industry, with scientifically based high technology.

Castro Diaz-Balart said that prioritization of this area emerged from the 6th Congress of the Communist Party of Cuba and was confirmed in the Economic and Social Policy Guidelines that comprise the country’s new economic model.

Science and technology are key to ensuring the future of a nation with scarce energy resources, an aging population and a declining birth rate, he said.

Cuban science is currently the object of a collective reanalysis, for example, at the Academy of Sciences, where two important documents have already been produced, Castro Diaz-Balart reported.

Their analyses are very critical, and very objective, dealing not only with final results, but also with the massive achievements of the movement from the Forum of Science and Technology, through the Youth Technical Brigades or the Innovators Association, he said.

State policy granting continual support for more than 50 years in order to develop science and technology has created a foundation that allows us to look optimistically to the near future, the honorary professor stressed.

sus/sa/iff/jpm

Modificado el ( lunes, 30 de septiembre de 2013 )

 

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