MONTEVIDEO – Uruguayan President Tabare Vazquez and Cuban counterpart Raul Castro agreed to consider the installation in the South American country of a plant to produce powdered milk for export to the Caribbean island, Uruguay’s vice president, Raul Sendic, said Tuesday.
The leaders met Monday in Montevideo along with Cabinet ministers from both governments and agreed on “the need and the importance” of strengthening bilateral trade and promoting investment.
“They (the Cubans) import $150 million in powdered milk from New Zealand and we could become Cuba’s powdered milk suppliers,” Sendic told reporters before a Senate session.
The project, if approved, would proceed under a joint financing deal, Sendic said.
Monday’s presidential meeting also included discussion of opportunities for Uruguayan investment on the Communist-ruled island.
“There is an investment plan they are opening and it could lead to the participation of different companies in a number of areas,” Sendic said, adding the Cuban delegation provided documents including “studies and analysis for investment projects in Cuba.”
“We will disseminate the materials here among the business community,” he said.
Raul Castro is trying to “update” Cuba’s socialist economic model and hopes that the planned normalization of diplomatic ties with Washington will lead to the end of the U.S. economic embargo against the island.