[Marxism] Cuban decree on electricity rate increases (text)
walterlx at earthlink.net
Thu Nov 24 09:41:19 MST 2005
This is the text of the newly released decree on utility rate hikes
here in Cuba. As you can see, it's not like any rate increase anyone
not living in Cuba has ever received. It proves readers with both a
political framework and a socially-responsible explanation of both
the reasons for the increase and its consequences. There are many
changes being undertaken in Cuba at the moment. It's very much the
style of the Cuban government to provide detailed explanations to
the Cuban public about such decisions. This is also why Fidel, the
Commander-in-Chief, was on television for four hours last night.
Walter Lippmann, CubaNews
Decree on electricity prices
A CubaNews translation.
Edited by Walter Lippmann
FIDEL CASTRO RUZ, President of the Council of State
and the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Cuba
LET IT BE KNOWN THAT:
CONSIDERING that since 1970 oil prices have increased from US $1.80
to more than US $50.00 per barrel as a consequence of absurd
expenditure policies implemented by consumer societies which have
caused an unstoppable and unsustainable worldwide depletion of oil
CONSIDERING that following the demise of the socialist countries and
the USSR late in 1991 our country faced a thorough special period and
abruptly stopped receiving 14 million tons of oil per year at a time
when domestic production amounted to only 500,000 tons per year;
CONSIDERING that Cubas largest share of oil goes to electric power
production, and in the last few years despite its costs having
multiplied several times, electricity prices have remained unchanged;
CONSIDERING that the worlds proven and probable oil and gas reserves
are inexorably decreasing while consumption and environmental
pollution rates are steadily growing and climate changes are
endangering life on Earth;
CONSIDERING that unless new, more sustainable and efficient energy
sources are developed and used rationally and optimally in every
country, power saving becomes the prime economic and moral duty of
todays societies and their governments at this moment;
CONSIDERING that the citizens of our country are obviously
unconcerned about electricity consumption due to its very low prices;
CONSIDERING as well that there are big income disparities between
those who receive relatively low pensions and salaries and those who
benefit from large monetary income resulting from speculation,
diversion of resources and other forms of unlawful enrichment;
CONSIDERING that electricity prices in the present circumstances and
while a strict policy is developed regarding the optimal use of any
form of power, together with a continuous search for more efficient
techniques and means for its application, the first step to that end
must encourage low power consumption by those who save and discourage
excess power consumption by those who waste, whatever their economic
and social status;
CONSIDERING that our Party and our Government have strongly
emphasized the principle that Cubas Socialist State must promote the
progressive growth of the material well-being of all citizens who
live on their salaries and the pensions they have deserved after a
lifetime of working for the benefit of society;
CONSIDERING that on the basis of this just and essential principle, a
number of measures to raise wages and social security assistance have
been implemented in the present year 2005 and others of similar
nature are still pending, similarly in favor of hundreds of thousands
of workers who are yet to benefit directly from some of them;
By using the power bestowed upon me by the Constitution of the
Republic, as President of the Council of State and the Council of
Ministers of Cuba, it is my duty to enact the following
FIRST: The prices to be charged for domestic power consumption are as
For a monthly consumption of the first 100 kilowatt/hour it remains
unchanged at the highly subsidized rate of 9 cents per kilowatt/hour.
For a monthly consumption of over 100 and up to 150 kilowatt/hour,
excess consumption is raised from 20 to 30 cents per kilowatt/hour.
For a monthly consumption of over 150 and up to 200 kilowatt/hour,
excess consumption is raised from 20 to 40 cents per kilowatt/hour.
For a monthly consumption of over 200 and up to 250 kilowatt/hour,
excess consumption is raised from 20 to 60 cents per kilowatt/hour.
For a monthly consumption of over 250 and up to 300 kilowatt/hour,
excess consumption is raised from 20 to 80 cents per kilowatt/hour.
For a monthly consumption of over 300 kilowatt/hour, excess
consumption is raised from 30 cents to 1.30 pesos per kilowatt/hour.
SECOND: The prices established as per the present Decree will come
into effect in December and start to be charged in January 2006.
Any attempt to evade or forge the values recorded by power meters or
use power in a fraudulent way will call for rigorous measures that
might even include suspension of service.
THIRD: The Executive Committee of the Council of Ministers and the
Ministry of Labor and Social Security, conformant with this Decree
that contains the first legal measure in the vital and decisive
struggle for power saving, will proceed to implement pending raises
in wages and its related additional improvements to gradually
increase the lowest benefits of social security and assistance.
FOURTH: All legal or lower level provisions opposing the stipulations
of the present Decree are hereby declared null and void.
LET IT BE PUBLISHED in the Gaceta Oficial.
GIVEN in the Palacio de la Revolución on November 22, 2005,
YEAR OF THE BOLIVARIAN ALTERNATIVE FOR THE AMERICAS.
Fidel Castro Ruz
President of the Council of State
and the Council of Ministers
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