President Raul Castro of Cuba walks with South African President Jacob Zuma while the leader reviewed the formation of the Cuban military forces welcoming him to the Caribbean nation. Cuba and South Africa have longstanding fraternal ties., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Cuba turns to SA for financial assistance
Thursday, 12 July 2012 13:06
CAPE TOWN — Facing an economic embargo from the United States, Cuba turns to South Africa for financial assistance, it was revealed here yesterday.
Cuba is among the major recipients of aid from South Africa, getting R100 million (about US$12,5 million) in financial assistance in the last financial year, Minister of International Relations and Co-operation Maite Nkoane-Mashabane said.
South Africa provided Cuba with the financial assistance to help support the Carribean country’s economic recovery following the 2008 hurricanes, Maite Nkoane-Mashabane said in a written response to a question raised in the National Assembly about the amount of aid the South African government provided to countries in the last three financial years.
In terms of getting financial aid from South Africa, Cuba came second to the Democratic Republic of Congo which received R126 million in the last financial year, during which a total of R268 million was provided to 19 countries, according to Nkoane-Mashabane.
Early this year, South Africa and Cuba reached an agreement, under which the former would provide the latter with an economic package worth more than
The package comprises two direct grants, which includes a US$14 million “solidarity grant”, and a low-interest repayable loan of R210 million.
The second grant of R40 million is for the purchase of seeds, R5 million which must be spent on the South African market.
South Africa and Cuba have maintained good relations. Trade between the two countries totalled R73 million in 2010.
In 2010, South Africa wrote off two debts, to the tune of R926 million and R121 million owed by Cuba. — Xinhua.