Self-Employment in Cuba Advances at a Turtle’s PaceJanuary 10, 2017 | Print |
HAVANA TIMES – The number of self-employed workers has reached 535,000 in a country of 11.2 million and its growth is so slow that it would take 20 years more to reach the figure of one million, necessary to deflate the padded staff of state enterprises and improve the salaries of those that remain.
The number of autonomous workers will hardly grow if all the restrictions on non-state forms of work aren’t relaxed, allowing cooperatives, small and medium-sized companies, and above all to expand the variety of jobs that people can legally dedicate themselves to.
To exclude private work to the country’s million university graduates is to push this sector to emigration as the only way to improve their income, which is exactly what’s happening. Thus, the nation is spending enormous resources on training professionals to contribute their knowledge in other countries.
Without growth in private employment, unproductive government run businesses will not be able to be closed down, nor reduce the bureaucratic-state apparatus. Likewise, it won’t be possible to improve wages in key sectors or invest the scarce resources in areas that bring benefits to the national economy.