Cuba is located at the entrance to the Gulf of Mexico in the northwestern Caribbean Sea. It is composed of more than 1,600 islands such as the island of Cuba and the Isla de la Juventud. Cuba is the largest island country in the West Indies.
(File Photo: VCG)
Full name: The Republic of Cuba
Area: 109,884 square kilometers
Population: 11.221 million (in 2017)
National Day: January 1
Official Language: Spanish
Capital: La Habana, with a population of 2.13 million (in 2017)
Currency: Cuban peso (CUP) and Cuban dollar (CUC, circulated in January 1995). The exchange rate between the peso and US dollar is 1:1.
In recent years, the political status in Cuba has remained stable. Cuba’s current Constitution was adopted in February 1976. The Council of Ministers is the highest administrative organ of Cuba and the President of the council also holds a concurrent post as the President of Cuba. The country is divided into 15 provinces and 1 special municipality (Isla de la Juventud). The Communist Party of Cuba is the only legitimate political party in Cuba.
Cuba has long implemented a planned economic system. The sugar industry, tourism and nickel export are important economic pillars. The main agricultural products of Cuba are sugar cane, tobacco, tropical fruits, coffee, cocoa, and rice. Cuba’s industrial products are mainly imported. Labor export, tourism and remittance income are important sources of Cuba’s foreign exchange. Cuba’s GDP grew by 1.6 percent year on year in 2017.
Cuba mainly exports nickel, sucrose, lobster, prawns, acidic fruits, cigars, and rum, and mainly imports petroleum, grain, machinery, fertilizer and chemical products. In 2017, the total foreign trade volume was 13.725 billion pesos, of which 2.885 billion pesos were exports and 10.84 billion pesos were imports. These three statistics increased by 9 percent, 24.4 percent and 6 percent respectively.
Cuba advocates respecting the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries, respecting the right of peoples to self-determination and opposing interference in the internal affairs of other countries. It advocates that all countries and peoples in the world are equal. It condemns all forms of hegemonism, interventionism, unilateralism and discrimination, opposes the use or threat of use of force, and opposes all forms of terrorism including state terrorism.
Relations with China:
Cuba was the first Latin American country to establish diplomatic relations with China. On September 2, 1960, Cuban President Castro announced that Cuba has cut off its relations with Taiwan and expressed its willingness to establish diplomatic relations with the People’s Republic of China. On September 28, 1960, the Chinese and Cuban governments issued a joint communique, confirming the establishment of the diplomatic relations between the two countries.
In recent years, the bilateral trade between China and Cuba has maintained a good momentum. At present, China is Cuba’s second largest trading partner and Cuba is China’s largest trading partner in the Caribbean.
According to China’s customs statistics, the trade volume between China and Cuba in 2017 was $1.76 billion, of which China’s imports were $1.36 billion and exports were $400 million. These three statistics increased by -14.6 percent, -23.6 percent and 42.9 percent year on year respectively. China mainly exports mechanical and electrical products, steel products, high-tech products, and automobiles and mainly imports nickel, sugar, and alcohol.