Author Archives: González-Corzo Mario A.

ASSOCIATION FOR THE STUDY OF THE CUBAN ECONOMY, PAPERS AND PROCEEDINGS OF THE TWENTY-FIFTH ANNUAL MEETING, JULY 30-AUGUST 1, 2015

ASCE: Cuba in Transition: Volume 25

Papers and Proceedings of the Twenty-Fifth Annual Meeting,  July 30-August 1, 2015

All papers are hyperlinked to the ASCE Website and can be seen in PDF format.

wwwPreface

Conference Program

Table of Contents

Reflections on the State of the Cuban Economy Carlos Seiglie

¿Es la Economía o es la Política?: La Ilusoria Inversión de K. Marx Alexis Jardines

Los Grandes Retos del Deshielo Emilio Morales

Preparing for a Full Restoration of Economic Relations between Cuba and the United States Ernesto Hernández-Catá

Economic Consequences of Cuba-U.S. Reconciliation Luis R. Luis

El Sector Privado y el Turismo en Cuba Ante un Escenario de Relaciones con Estados Unidos José Luis Perelló Cabrera

The Logical Fallacy of the New U.S.-Cuba Policy and its Security Implications José Azel

Why Cuba is a State Sponsor of Terror Joseph M. Humire

The National Security Implications of the President’s New Cuba Policy Ana Quintana

Factores Atípicos de las Relaciones Internacionales Económicas de Cuba: El Rol de los Servicios Cubanos de Inteligencia Enrique García

Entrepreneurship in Post-Socialist Economies: Lessons for Cuba Mario A. González-Corzo

When Reforms Are Not: Recent Policy Development in Cuba and the Implications for the Future Enrique S. Pumar

Revisiting the Seven Threads in the Labyrinth of the Cuban Revolution Luis Martínez-Fernández

La Economía Política del Embargo o Bloqueo Interno Jorge A. Sanguinetty

Establishing Ground Rules for Political Risk Claims about Cuba José Gabilondo

Resolving U.S. Expropriation Claims Against Cuba: A Very Modest Proposal Matías F. Travieso-Díaz

U.S.-Cuba BIT: A Guarantee in Reestablishing Trade Relations Rolando Anillo, Esq.

Lessons from Cuba’s Party-Military Relations and a Tale of “Two Fronts Line” in North Korea Jung-chul Lee

The Military, Ideological Frameworks and Familial Marxism: A Comment on Jung-chul Lee,“A Lesson from Cuba’s Party-Military Relations and a Tale of ‘Two Fronts Line’ in North Korea” Larry Catá Backer

Hybrid Economy in Cuba and North Korea: Key to the Longevity of Two Regimes and Difference Young-Ja Park

Historical Progress Of U.S.-Cuba Relationship: Implication for U.S.-North Korea Case Wootae Lee

Estimating Disguised Unemployment in Cuba Ernesto Hernández-Catá

Reliable Partners, Not Carpetbaggers Domingo Amuchástegui

Foreign Investment in Cuba’s “Updating” of Its Economic Model Jorge F. Pérez-López

Global Corporate Social Responsibility (GCSR) Standards With Cuban Characteristics: What Normalization Means for Transnational Enterprise Activity in Cuba Larry Catá Backer

Bienal de la Habana, 1984: Art Curators as State Researchers Paloma Checa-Gismero

Luchas y Éxitos de las Diásporas Cubana Lisa Clarke

A Framework for Assessing the Impact of U.S. Restrictions on Telecommunication Exports to Cuba Larry Press

Measures to Deal with an Aging Population: International Experiences and Lessons for Cuba Sergio Díaz-Briquets

Posted in Blog | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

LA AGROINDUSTRIA CAÑERA CUBANA: TRANSFORMACIONES RECIENTES

Mario González-Corzo, Editor, con la asistencia de Rosalina López

Bildner Center for Western Hemisphere Studies, The Graduate Center, The City University of New York

 This volume presents an analysis of the evolution and recent transformation of the sugar cane industry in Cuba from the fallout of sugar production during the Special Period to the creation of AZCUBA in 2011 to face new challenges; it also covers the potential use of sugar as energy and the behavior of the commodity within the global market economy.

 Complete document here:  La agroindustria cañera cubana

zz

CONTENIDO

Introducción, Mario González-Corzo

1 Importancia económica y estratég ica de la agroindustria cubana, Armando Nova González

2 La agroindustria bioenergética de la caña azúcar: retos y pers-pectivas, Federico Sulroca Domínguez

3 Las agroindustria cañera cubana: desempeño y tendencias recientes, Mario González-Corzo

4   AZCUBA: un modelo de la agroindustria cubana, Federico Sulroca Domínguez

5 La inserción de la agroindustria en la economía internacional, Lázaro Peña Castellanos

Bibliografía

Sobre los autores

13901904956_a530d3c152

Posted in Blog | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

CUBA’S AGRICULTURAL TRANSFORMATIONS

Journal of Agricultural Studies ISSN 2166-0379 2015, Vol. 3, No. 2

Armando Nova González, Centro de Investigaciones de la Economía Internacional (CIEI), Universidad de La Habana, and Mario A. González Corzo, Lehman College, City University of New York (CUNY)

Complete Essay Here:  Mario Gonzalez-Corzo and Armando Nova, Cuba’s Agricultural Transformations, 2015

 ABSTRACT:

  The Cuban government has implemented a series of agricultural transformations since 2007 to increase the country’s agricultural self-sufficiency and reduce its dependency on food imports. These include the transfer (in usufruct) of State-owned land to non-State producers (e.g. cooperatives and private farmers), moderate price reforms, the decentralization of decision making, and the gradual relaxation of existing forms of agricultural commercialization.

As a result of these measures, the area planted, as well as physical output and agricultural yields (in selected non-sugar crop categories) have shown mixed results, but still remain below desired levels.

There are three (3) fundamental unresolved aspects that have prevented Cuba’s agricultural sector from achieving the desired outcomes: (1) the need to achieve the “realization of property,” (2) the recognition and acceptance of the market as a complementary economic coordination mechanism, and (3) the absence of a systemic focus to achieve the successful completion of the agricultural production cycle.

These unresolved aspects should be addressed through:

(1) the consolidation of input markets, where producers can obtain essential inputs at prices that correspond to the prices they can obtain for their output,

(2) greater autonomy to allow agricultural producers to freely decide when, where, and to whom they could sell their output, after social contracts have been fulfilled,

(3) the diversification of the forms of agricultural commercialization to permit greater participation by non-State economic actors,

(4) allowing agricultural producers to freely hire the labor necessary to sustain and increase production, and (5) providing agricultural producers with the financing and technical assistance necessary.

z3 Mario A. González Corzo and Armando Nova González,

Posted in Blog | Tagged , | Leave a comment

REFORMANDO EL MODELO ECONÓMICO CUBANO

Mauricio A. Font y Mario González-Corzo, Editores, Con la asistencia de Rosalina López

New York: Bildner Center for Western Hemisphere Studies, The Graduate Center, The City University of New York, 2015

Documento Completo: Reformando el Modelo Economico Cubano

 New Picture (12)

CONTENIDO

Introducción, Mario González-Corzo

Del ajuste externo a una nueva concepción del socialism Cubano, Juan Triana Cordoví

La estructura de las exportaciones de bienes en Cuba 29, Ricardo Torres

Relanzamiento del cuentapropismo en medio del ajuste structural, Pavel Vidal Alejandro y Omar Everleny Pérez Villanueva

Las cooperativas en Cuba, Camila Piñeiro Harnecker

La apertura a las microfinanzas en Cuba, Pavel Vidal Alejandro

Hacia una nueva fiscalidad en Cuba, Saira Pons

Bibliografía

Posted in Blog | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Recent US-Cuba Policy Changes: Potential Impact on Self-Employment

Mario A. González-Corzo*   Cuba Transition Project, Institute for Cuban and Cuban-American Studies, University of Miami, Issue 239,  March 11, 2015

Washington’s “new course on Cuba” presents a new set of challenges, opportunities and new prospects for the Island’s emerging self-employed workers. There are several reasons for this:

1. Despite existing constraints and limitations, policy contradictions, and the predominance of bureaucratic economic coordination mechanisms and centralized planning, the expansion of self-employment is one of the principal elements of Cuba’s efforts to “update” its economic model.

2.The implementation of a series of reform policy changes in Cuba since 2007, and particularly after 2010, have contributed to the rapid expansion of self-employment and its growing share of total employment (Figure 1). 

zz1
Source: Oficina Nacional de Estadísticas e Información [ONEI], 2014; author’s calculations.

  •  While limited openings to allow the expansion of self-employment are not a new phenomenon in the Cuban economy, the number of legally-registered self-employed workers has grown significantly since 2007.
  • Self-employment has grown at an even faster rate since 2010, when the Cuban government announced its plan to reduce its bloated State payrolls by 20% and after 2011 when the number of authorized self-employment categories was increased to 201.
  • The number of self-employed workers grew 206.6% from 138,400 in 2007 to 424,300 in 2013. By contrast, employment in the State sector fell 10.1% between 2007 and 2013, and employment in cooperatives declined 6.2% during the same period.
  • While the State sector accounted for 82.9% of total employment in 2007, this figure fell to 73.7% in 2013. Self-employed workers represented 2.8% of total employment in 2007, but their share of total employment grew to 8.6% in 2013.
  • Most self-employed workers in Cuba, however, are presently employed in relatively low-skilled (service-oriented) activities. They also face a wide range of legal prohibitions that limit their ability to grow and achieve economies of scale and their potential contributions to the country’s development and economic growth.

3. Despite facing strict State-imposed controls and limitations, self-employment has contributed to job creation, the provision of goods and services that were insufficiently produced by the State, and increases in the State’s tax revenues; it has also contributed to changes in attitudes, perceptions, and relationships between a growing segment of the Cuban population and the State, leaving a lasting “footprint” on the Cuban economy.

4. Since the limited liberalization of self-employment and the legalization of the U.S. dollar in 1993, self-employed workers have been among the principal recipients of remittances from abroad, particularly from the Cuban community in the United States, directly serving as one of the principal mechanisms to strengthen transnational ties between both countries.

While self-employment expanded significantly (206.6%), and its share of total employment increased notably during the 2007-2013 period, it has grown at a much slower rate, following the initial spurt experienced in 2011. This can be primarily attributed to existing restrictions on the types of self-employment activities that are currently authorized, excessive State regulation and intervention, the inexistence of input markets where self-employed workers and micro-entrepreneurs can obtain essential inputs at competitive prices in Cuban pesos (CUP), onerous taxation, and the remaining ambivalence of the State’s policies and attitudes towards the self-employed.

Cuba’s self-employed workers also have to contend with a dilapidated infrastructure, excessive bureaucratic constraints, insufficient sources of funding (excluding remittances), logistical difficulties do to the existence of primitive (quasi-formal) supply chains, government restrictions regarding the accumulation of capital (or concentration of wealth), and limited property rights. In addition, they lack access to mobile payment platforms, advanced (computerized) accounting and transactions (or sales) recording systems, and modern procurement and purchasing systems.

In terms of market segment concentration, it is worth noting that a notable share of self-employed workers is engaged in tourist-oriented activities such as food services (servicios de gastronomía), lodging or hospitality (alquileres), and transportation. Many of these depend on remittances from abroad as a primary source of working capital, and the majority of their client base consists of tourists and foreign visitors. Primarily catering to a limited (albeit affluent) market segment, rather than to a wider strata of the Cuban population, limits their market share and opportunities for growth and expansion.

Despite facing these challenges and limitations, the number self-employed workers in Cuba continues to expand (albeit at a slower pace in recent years), demonstrating the resilience of the entrepreneurial spirit that has historically characterized a significant portion of the Island’s population.

Given the growing importance of self-employment in the Cuban economy in recent years, the strong transnational linkages between a significant portion of self-employed workers and their friends and relatives in the United States, new U.S. policies towards Cuba are likely to impact this key sector of the Cuban economy in several ways:

  1. Continued expansion of self-employment activities, including new more value-added categories.
  2. Improved access to credit and equity capital to finance small-scale private business ventures.
  3. Opening to foreign investment, including partnerships with Cubans residing abroad.
  4. Future expansion of firm size, scope, and areas of operations.
  5. Greater share of total employment and contribution to Gross Domestic Product (GDP), tax payments, and social security system contributions.
  6. Adoption of modern point of sales (POS) systems, accounting systems, and inventory anagement systems to track sales and report business operations (and thereby improve the State’s ability to collect taxes from microenterprises and self-employed workers).

Despite all the potential (positive) effects of the new US policy approach with regards to self-employment, their real impact “on the front lines” depends on whether or not the Cuban government has the political will to implement deeper reform measures that will reduce the monopoly of the State, while permitting the expansion of the private sector by eliminating the “internal embargo.” On the economic front, this can be accomplished by lifting the internal restrictions, excessive regulations, onerous taxation, and bureaucratic limitations imposed by the State on the self-employed. On the political front, this process would require a radical shift in the State’s perceptions and attitudes towards the self-employed, recognizing Cuba’s emerging entrepreneurial class not only as a source of tax revenue for the State, but as primarily as a an engine of job creation, wealth formation, and the economic growth and development.

_________________________________________________

*Mario A. González-Corzo, Associate Professor, Department of Economics and Business, LEHMAN COLLEGE, City University of New York (CUNY), and is a Research Associate, Institute for Cuban and Cuban-American Studies (ICCAS), University of Miami

Posted in Blog | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

CONFERENCE PROCEEDINGS, ASCE 2014

The papers presented at the 2014 Conference of the Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy are now available.

Cuba in Transition: Volume 24: Papers and Proceedings of the Twenty-Fourth Annual Meeting.

The papers listed below are hypewr-linked to directly to their respective file on the ASCE web site.

Posted in Blog | Tagged , | Leave a comment

U.S AGRICULTURAL EXPORTS TO CUBA: COMPOSITION, TRENDS, AND PROSPECTS FOR THE FUTURE

By Mario A. Gonzalez-Corzo and Armando Nova Gonzalez

New PictureOriginal Article here:  http://www.choicesmagazine.org/magazine/pdf/cmsarticle_341.pdf

 13903139641_7655cbec7c_bMario A. Gonzalez-Corzo and Armando Nova Gonzalez

 

Posted in Blog | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

CUBA’S EMERGING SELF-EMPLOYED ENTREPRENEURS: RECENT DEVELOPMENTS AND PROSPECTS FOR THE FUTURE

MARIO A. GONZÁLEZ-CORZO and ORLANDO JUSTO,

Journal of Devevelopment Entrepreneurship, 19, 1450015 (2014) [26 pages] DOI: 10.1142/S1084946714500150

The complete essay is available here, though access is restricted, unfortunately, unless your University provides automatic access:  http://www.worldscientific.com/toc/jde/19/03

 Abstract:

This paper examines the evolution of Cuba’s self-employed entrepreneurs since the sector became an officially-recognized alternative to State sector employment in 2010. Despite the expansion of authorized self-employment activities and the implementation of gradual economic reforms to “update” the country’s socialist economic model since 2010, Cuba’s emerging self-employed entrepreneurs still face a series of constraints and limitations, such as an onerous tax system, underdeveloped banking and financial sectors, lack of access to organized input markets and a still hostile business climate that hinder their ability to expand and contribute to the country’s economic growth.

Orlando Justo is in the  Department of Economics and Business, City University of New York (CUNY), Lehman College, Carman Hall, 377, 250 Bedford Park Boulevard West, Bronx, NY 10468, USA

Mario Gonzalez Corzo (Ph.D. Rutgers University) is Associate Professor at the Department of Economics at Lehman College (CUNY). He is also Faculty Fellow at the Bildner Center for Western Hemisphere Studies at The Graduate Center, CUNY, and a Research Associate at the Institute for Cuban and Cuban-American Studies at the University of Miami, FL.  His research interests and areas of specialization include Cuba’s post-Soviet economic developments, agricultural reforms, entrepreneurship, and financial sector reforms in post-socialist transition economies.

MarioMario Gonzalez Corzo

.

SOME SMALL ENTERPRISES AND ENTREPRENEURS, HAVANA

Mercado Artesanal 2, on the MaleconCrafts Market, on the Malecon

Picture2dfThe Barrio Chino

24327_1371007285628_1545135432_919301_1742016_nPortrait Photographer, at the Capitolio

Cuba-Spring-2010-002Bicitaxis, Central Havana

Picture2aCrafts Market, by the Plaza de la Catedral

 

Posted in Blog | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Publication of the Papers from the 2013 Conference of the Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy

 

The proceedings of the Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy’s 23rd Annual Meeting entitled  “Reforming Cuba?” (August 1–3, 2013) is now available. The presentations have now been published by ASCE  at http://www.ascecuba.org/.

The presentations are listed below and linked to their sources in the ASCE Web Site.

ASCE_logo_220

 Preface

Panorama de las reformas económico-sociales y sus efectos en Cuba, Carmelo Mesa-Lago

Crítica a las reformas socioeconómicas raulistas, 2006–2013, Rolando H. Castañeda

Nuevo tratamiento jurídico-penal a empresarios extranjeros: ¿parte de las reformas en Cuba?, René Gómez Manzano

Reformas en Cuba: ¿La última utopía?, Emilio Morales

Potentials and Pitfalls of Cuba’s Move Toward Non-Agricultural Cooperatives, Archibald R. M. Ritter

Possible Political Transformations in Cuba in the Light of Some Theoretical and Empirically Comparative Elements, Vegard Bye

Las reformas en Cuba: qué sigue, qué cambia, qué falta, Armando Chaguaceda and Marie Laure Geoffray

Cuba: ¿Hacia dónde van las “reformas”?, María C. Werlau

Resumen de las recomendaciones del panel sobre las medidas que debe adoptar Cuba para promover el crecimiento económico y nuevas oportunidades, Lorenzo L. Pérez

Immigration and Economics: Lessons for Policy, George J. Borjas

The Problem of Labor and the Construction of Socialism in Cuba: On Contradictions in the Reform of Cuba’s Regulations for Private Labor Cooperatives, Larry Catá Backer

Possible Electoral Systems in a Democratic Cuba, Daniel Buigas

The Legal Relations Between the U.S. and Cuba, Antonio R. Zamora

Cambios en la política migratoria del Gobierno cubano: ¿Nuevas reformas?, Laritza Diversent

The Venezuela Risks for PetroCaribe and Alba Countries, Gabriel Di Bella, Rafael Romeu and Andy Wolfe

Venezuela 2013: Situación y perspectivas socioeconómicas, ajustes insuficientes, Rolando H. Castañeda

Cuba: The Impact of Venezuela, Domingo Amuchástegui

Should the U.S. Lift the Cuban Embargo? Yes; It Already Has; and It Depends!, Roger R. Betancourt

Cuba External Debt and Finance in the Context of Limited Reforms, Luis R. Luis

Cuba, the Soviet Union, and Venezuela: A Tale of Dependence and Shock, Ernesto Hernández-Catá

Competitive Solidarity and the Political Economy of Invento, Roberto I. Armengol

The Fist of Lázaro is the Fist of His Generation: Lázaro Saavedra and New Cuban Art as Dissidence, Emily Snyder

La bipolaridad de la industria de la música cubana: La concepción del bien común y el aprovechamiento del mercado global, Jesse Friedman

Biohydrogen as an Alternative Energy Source for Cuba, Melissa Barona, Margarita Giraldo and Seth Marini

Cuba’s Prospects for a Military Oligarchy, Daniel I. Pedreira

Revolutions and their Aftermaths: Part One — Argentina’s Perón and Venezuela’s Chávez, Gary H. Maybarduk

Cuba’s Economic Policies: Growth, Development or Subsistence?, Jorge A. Sanguinetty

Cuba and Venezuela: Revolution and Reform, Silvia Pedraza and Carlos A. Romero Mercado

Mercado inmobiliario en Cuba: Una apertura a medias, Emilio Morales and Joseph Scarpaci

Estonia’s Post-Soviet Agricultural Reforms: Lessons for Cuba, Mario A. González-Corzo

Cuba Today: Walking New Roads? Roberto Veiga González

From Collision to Covenant: Challenges Faced by Cuba’s Future Leaders, Lenier González Mederos

Proyecto “DLíderes”, José Luis Leyva Cruz

Notes for the Cuban Transition, Antonio Rodiles and Alexis Jardines

Economistas y politólogos, blogueros y sociólogos: ¿Y quién habla de recursos naturales? Yociel Marrero Báez

Cambio cultural y actualización económica en Cuba: internet como espacio contencioso, Soren Triff

From Nada to Nauta: Internet Access and Cyber-Activism in A Changing Cuba, Ted A. Henken and Sjamme van de Voort

Technology Domestication, Cultural Public Sphere, and Popular Music in Contemporary Cuba, Nora Gámez Torres

Internet and Society in Cuba, Emily Parker

Poverty and the Effects on Aversive Social Control, Enrique S. Pumar

Cuba’s Long Tradition of Health Care Policies: Implications for Cuba and Other Nations, Rodolfo J. Stusser

A Century of Cuban Demographic Interactions and What They May Portend for the Future, Sergio Díaz-Briquets

The Rebirth of the Cuban Paladar: Is the Third Time the Charm? Ted A. Henken

Trabajo por cuenta propia en Cuba hoy: trabas y oportunidades, Karina Gálvez Chiú

Remesas de conocimiento, Juan Antonio Blanco

Diaspora Tourism: Performance and Impact of Nonresident Nationals on Cuba’s Tourism Sector, María Dolores Espino

The Path Taken by the Pharmaceutical Association of Cuba in Exile, Juan Luis Aguiar Muxella and Luis Ernesto Mejer Sarrá

Appendix A: About the Authors

logo

Posted in Blog | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Presentations from the Bildner Center, (CUNY) “COLLOQUIUM ON THE CUBAN ECONOMY” May 2012,

On May 12, The Bildner Center at City University of New York, under the leadership of Mauricio Font organized a one-day conference analyzing the recent experience of the Cuban economy in its process of transformation.  All of the Power Point presentations from the  “COLLOQUIUM ON THE CUBAN ECONOMY” have been posted on the  Center’s Web Site. The presentations of the Cuban participants, all from the Center for the Study of the Cuban Economy, namely Omar Everleny, Pavel Vidal, Camila Piñeiro, and Armando Nova, are especially valuable and informative as they provide up-to-date and inside analyses of major issue areas. Mauricio, Mario González-Corzo, and the team are certainly to be congratulated for organizing this event

All of the presentations can be be accessed at the Bildner Web Site via the hyperlinks listed below in the form of the program of the conference.

Session #1: Cuban Updates on Actualización

1. Cuentapropismo y ajuste estructural
Omar Everleny, University of Havana

2. Microfinanzas en Cuba
Pavel Vidal, University of Havana

3. Non-state Enterprises in Cuba: Current Situation and Prospects
Camila Piñeiro, University of Havana

4. Impacto de los Lineamientos de la Política Económico y Social en la producción nacional de alimento
Armando Nova, University of Havana

Moderator: Mauricio Font, Bildner Center for Western Hemisphere Studies

Session # 2: Strategic Initiatives: Agriculture

1. Measuring Cuba’s Agricultural Transformations: Preliminary Findings
Mario González-Corzo, Lehman College, CUNY

2. U.S. Food and Agricultural Exports to Cuba – Uncertain Times Ahead
Bill Messina, University of Florida

Moderator: Emily Morris, Economist Intelligence Unit in London

Session # 3: Revamping Socialism: Perspectives and Prospects

1. Actualización in Perspective
Mauricio Font, Bildner Center for Western Hemisphere Studies

2. Cuban Restructuring: Economic Risks
Emily Morris, Economist Intelligence Unit in London

3. Prospects in a Changing Geo-Economic Environment Archibald Ritter, Carleton University, Canada

ROUNDTABLE: Implications and Future Agenda


Posted in Blog | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment