The surprise opening to Cuba will not necessarily have dramatic effects on either country, though there will be tangible and intangible changes for both.1 For Cuba, the opening brings the prospect for a strong influx of dollars and tourists. The diplomatic opening does not allow unfettered travel, but it reduces the barriers significantly. Pitt's Study Abroad program to Cuba had to be canceled last year due to banking restrictions. That type of problem will surely disappear. Perhaps, shadowing the new policy with regards to undocumented immigrants, Ob
Economy and Development
Following more than five decades of fluctuating economic strategies, Cuba's Socialist Economy Today: Navigating Challenges and Change by Paolo Spadoni, and assistant professor of political science at Georgia Regents University, analyzes how Raúl Castro's maintenance of the "pragmatic cycle" has affected the living conditions and the economic power of the island nation.
Oil prices are rapidly falling, thus Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro decided to make an important trip this past Monday. He announced in a public address on Sunday evening, “I leave on a very important trip to deal with new projects… and the decline in revenues that are the product of the sharp decline in oil prices.”1 First stop, Russia.
Latin American nations are notoriously poor tax collectors and Argentina is among the least effective. Despite a relatively high level of development, Argentina’s governments are unable or unwilling to extract at levels comparable even to the surrounding nations. One possible source of this weakness is Argentina’s political structure, including its fiscal federalism and the incentives provided by elections and national governance. Crucially, taxing is unpopular, so politicians that face reelection or can gain resources elsewhere will avoid it.
On July 31st 2014 the clock ran out on the deadline for Argentina’s government to make a $539 million interest payment to the 93 percent of its bondholders which had agreed to debt restructuring in the years since the country’s 2001/2 economic and political crisis. At that time Argentina had been forced to declare the largest sovereign default in world history, but with the latest deadline having been missed, the South American nation is now once again in ‘technical default’ with the doom merchants forecasting profound economic upheaval.