February 20, 2008 / 4:52 PM / in 11 years

FACTBOX-Key facts about the Cuban economy

Feb 20 (Reuters) - The Cuban state controls 90 percent of the economy and says it is secretive in reporting performance due to U.S. economic sanctions. The following data is derived from government reports without independent confirmation.

* GROSS DOMESTIC PRODUCT - Cuba reported 11.8 percent growth in 2005, 12.5 percent in 2006 and 7.5 percent in 2007 to reach some 47 billion pesos (1997 prices), a figure 8 percent higher than in 1989. Cuba uses its own formula to measure GDP that includes the value of free social services, adding 3 or 4 percentage points to traditional growth rates. Services comprised 76 percent of GDP in 2007.

* INFLATION AND UNEMPLOYMENT - Inflation averaged around 4 percent over the last five years while unemployment fell to 1.8 from 4.1 percent, the government said. Many workers and young people are enrolled in classes and are paid a stipend, and therefore considered employed. Others simply do not seek employment and are not considered unemployed.

* BUDGET - The government budget was increased by 23 percent in 2007 to 41.5 billion pesos after a 32 percent jump in 2006. The budget deficit was 3.2 percent of gross domestic product in 2007, compared with 3.1 percent in 2006.

* CURRENT ACCOUNT - The government reported a current account balance of payments deficit of $239.7 million in 2006, after posting a $140.2 million surplus in 2005, the first surplus since 1989.

* FOREIGN DEBT - After remaining stable at around $11 billion from 2000 through 2002, Cuba’s foreign debt increased to $12 billion in 2003, $13.8 billion in 2004 and $16 billion by the close of 2006. Cuba does not recognize nonconvertible currency debt owed to the former Soviet Union.

* TRADE - The trade deficit increased to $5.8 billion in 2007 from $2.7 billion in 2002 as imports soared to $9.6 billion from $4.1 billion and exports increased to $3.8 billion from $2 billion. During the same period service revenues increased to $8.4 billion from $2.8 billion.

* FAMILY REMITTANCES - The government does not report family remittances entering the country, which are estimated by most experts at between $800 million and $1 billion per year.

* EXCHANGE RATE - The Cuba peso is officially pegged at 92 U.S. cents, but for domestic transactions it is currently valued at less than 5 cents. (Reporting by Marc Frank in Havana, Editing by Michael Christie and David Wiessler) (For special coverage from Reuters on Castro's retirement, see: here)

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