26 February 2012

CUBA / NICARAGUA / VENEZUELA : Aid/Oil Dependent Nations Fret Anew Over Chavez's Health.


     There's new apprehension in La Habana...and Managua...as Venezuela's Hugo Chavez goes under the knife there...for the 3rd time...in his battle with an undisclosed cancer.
     Cuba and Nicaragua have been the top recipients for billions in cheap oil, long term loans...and outright gifts...during Chavez's nearly 13 years in power...during which he has given away...more than $82 billion...to 40 nations.
     Some experts say that 2/3 of Cuba's oil comes from Caracas...with another $5 billion paid annually for services...like health and sports professionals.
    Dissident Cuban blogger Yoani Sanchez just wrote: 'There's speculation here of a possible second 'Special Period' if Chavez's health worsens.'
    Nicaragua and Cuba have taken some small steps to reduce dependency...but a DC analyst predicts that 'Pulling the plug on this assistance could throw Nicaragua or Cuba into deep recessions.'