Raul Castro showing impatience at slow reform pace

By REUTERS
August 23, 2011 20:15

 
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HAVANA - Cuban President Raul Castro has sounded increasingly impatient in recent months with the slow implementation of his economic reforms, which he publicly blames mostly on bureaucratic sloth and resistance to change.

In public statements, he has accused government cadres of laziness, corruption, neglect and ideological rigidity and has repeatedly urged them to reject old revolutionary dogma and embrace new ways of thinking.

"Let us clean our heads of foolishness of all kinds. Don't forget that the first decade of the 21st century has already passed, and it's time," he sternly told the National Assembly on August 1.

His more than 300 reforms, some already in place, but most still pending, will liberalize Cuba's struggling, Soviet-style economy by emphasizing greater private initiative, reducing subsidies, decentralizing government and slashing a million people from government payrolls.

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