In Havana this past weekend, Cuba passed a new law to open the country to foreign investment. The latest in a series of reforms by Raul Castro, who succeeded his brother Fidel in 2008, this law encourages foreign capital in an effort to advance Cuba’s development and struggling economy.
Economy and Development
In the largest city in South America, more than 8,000 families are living in temporary tents consisting of plastic sheets and timber.
Last week, Argentina’s president Cristina Fernández de Kirchner faced a general strike from some of the largest unions of the country. Most businesses and services throughout the country were closed including transportation, hospitals, schools, and restaurants.1 With many taxi and bus drivers on strike, those who did not participate could not go to work for the day. Picketers blocked off roads, preventing travel throughout the capital. In other cities throughout the country, such as Córdoba, smaller scale strikes had similar effects.
With one month until the World Cup, Brazil is rushing to complete the necessary infrastructure to effectively host the tournament, which begins June 12th when Brazil faces Croatia. The Brazilian Ministry of Tourism has estimated the World Cup could result in up to $11 billion USD in direct, indirect and induced economic growth for the country, a number more than 20 times what host South Africa made in 2010.