[Venezuelanalysis.com's Chris Carlson reports on this week's signing of several bilateral economic agreements between Cuba and Venezuela. Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and Cuban leader Raul Castro met in Havana on Monday to discuss a number of joint projects as part of the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA), and President Chavez proposed a future joining of the two countries into a confederation.]
Cuba and Venezuela Deepen Alliance with More Accords
Tuesday October 16, 2007
Mérida, October 16, 2007 (venezuelanalysis.com)- Cuba and Venezuela announced an increased economic and political alliance yesterday after signing several bilateral economic agreements. Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and Cuban leader Raul Castro met in Havana on Monday to discuss a number of joint projects as a part of the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA), and President Chavez proposed a future joining of the two countries into a confederation.
Just as Cuba and Venezuela were the first two countries in the formation of ALBA, the new regional alliance that Nicaragua and Bolivia later joined, the Venezuelan president suggested that Cuba and Venezuela be the first in forming a confederation of nations.
"Now we should be looking ahead, Cuba and Venezuela could perfectly form a confederation of nations in the near future, two countries in one," he proposed.
The proposal comes as the two nations continue to forge a tighter relationship, both economically and politically. President Chavez spent the weekend in Cuba where he paid tribute to the 40th anniversary of the death of Che Guevara, and broadcast his Sunday TV and Radio show Aló Presidente from the island. Chavez said on the show that the two countries are governed by "just one government."
"We are going towards a confederation of Bolivarian nations," he said in reference to the South American independence leader Simon Bolivar who proposed the unification of the region in the 19th century.
"We are going to transform this group of ALBA countries, and more countries, into a confederation, the unification of our people. We are going to transform it into a regional power," he said.
Cuba and Venezuela signed a total of 14 economic agreements yesterday, including a joint oil refinery, the exploration for oil in Cuba and in the Gulf of Mexico, an underwater fiber optic cable connecting the two countries, and several joint companies to undertake other ventures. They also made agreements to study many other prospects for "a growing process of union and integration."
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