March 4, 1961
Bulgarian Embassy, Havana (Michev), Information Regarding the Reorganization of the Cuban Government
This document was made possible with support from Leon Levy Foundation
Confidential, by courier!
Havana, 4 March 1961
EMBAJADA DE LA REPUBLICA
POPULAR DE BULGARIA
About: The new reorganization in the Council of Ministers of the Cuban revolutionary government implemented on 23 February 1961.
Recently, one of the most characteristic political events was the reorganization of the Council of Ministers - the foundation of a Ministry of Industry, of the Central Planning Committee, of the Ministries of Foreign and Domestic trade and the resolutions adopted with regard to that and some other issues.
The goal of the reorganization is to catch up with and organizationally to integrate the deep economic, political and social transformations and to quickly push forward the development of Cuba on [a] socialist path, even though nobody talks directly about this socialist agenda.
The reorganization is considered very important. With it begins a vast and comprehensive reconstruction of the backward economy of Cuba and [in this way] its independence will be guaranteed. Everywhere, it is emphasized that this is done with the generous assistance of the Soviet Union and the other socialist countries.
1. The first important resolution of the Council of Ministers and of the Chairmanship of the republic on 23 February 1961 is the foundation of the Central planning committee (Junta central de planification). Because of its great significance, the Chairman is the Prime Minister, Fidel Castro himself, and deputy chairman is Raul Castro. The latter will be the chairman of the executive bureau of the committee, which will consist of three people, and practically he will be dealing with the planning.
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2. Another important resolution is the foundation of the Ministry of Industry, which will be led by Ernesto Guevara and which is assigned the task to play an important and historical role in the industrialization of Cuba.
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In relation to the plan for the industrialization Ernesto Guevara explained that for 5 years 1 billion pesos will be invested in the industry, from which 600 million [will be] for the shipment of whole plants, machines, and equipment from the socialist countries, and for that purpose Cuba receives a credit of about 600 million pesos from the USSR and the other socialist countries. Guevara underscored the huge scale on which the industrialization will develop, as well as the enormous [amount of] aid which will be received from the socialist countries. He raised the slogan: “Building of factories for factories.” “A year of the industrialization” is prepared. Up to now there was 1959 - “A year of the revolution”,1960 - “A year of the agrarian reform” and 1961- “A year of education.”
3. Another resolution is the foundation of the Ministry of Foreign Trade. It includes the hitherto existing Bank for foreign trade. As up to now it will be responsible for the whole import and export, which are mainly with the socialist countries (above 60%).
4. The newly created Ministry of Domestic Trade will rule the state trade enterprises, will take care of supplies, and will control the prices and the commercial sector, which at the moment makes up the greater part of trade.
5. The law for the length of service and the social insurance for the working class was also important.
The task of diversification and increase of the agricultural production is set together with the issue concerning industrialization.
During a conversation with ministers and other political functionaries, they talked with enormous enthusiasm that the latest reorganization begins at a new stage in the development of the Cuban revolution and a new Cuba is being built, which until recently was under the political and economic oppression of the USA, who took everything cheaply, did not develop either industry, or agriculture, but imported in Cuba goods produced from Cuban raw materials at high prices.
Everybody speaks confidently about the great prospects, which these resolutions open for Cuba.
In all those conversations with the Ministers, while talking about the great enthusiasm of the people for the implementation of these plans, it was emphasized that they are in store for a great struggle for the elimination of the domestic counter-revolution and against intervention against Cuba, organized by the USA.
Thus, the enthusiasm about the construction is associated with a constant readiness for action in defense of Cuba against the intervention, organized by the Americans.
AMBASSADOR: K. Michev
 Konstantin Michev – a former participant in the International Brigades during the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939), Ambassador to Cuba (1961-1963).
Bulgaria’s Ambassador to Cuba Konstantin Michev reports on the reorganization of Cuba’s revolutionary government. In the report Michev notes that the government is realigning itself with the intent to become socialist, though not publicizing it. The realignment includes the creation of ministries and committees to oversee the transition and affairs of the country. Fidel Castro, Raul Castro, and Ernesto Guevara are assigned key posts to manage the transition. Through the help of socialist countries, Cuba is developing independent of USA, which previously hampered Cuba’s growth and development. Michev also notes that the Cuban government is prepared to defend itself against counter-revolution and US intervention into Cuban affairs.
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