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China grants $600 mln to Cuba during solidarity visit

grants $600 mln to Cuba during solidarity visit
(AFP) – 14 hours ago

— China provided its ideological ally Cuba 600 million dollars in
loans and grants Wednesday during a visit to strengthen ties by the
Asian giant's parliamentary head Wu Bangguo, diplomatic sources said.

Wu, the second most powerful man in China's ruling Communist Party,
arrived Tuesday night on the communist-ruled island for a three-day visit.

He and Cuban parliamentary chief Ricardo Alarcon oversaw the signing of
a series of agreements, including for a loan worth 260 million dollars
for the purchase of 10 grain shipments, as well as a 300-million-dollar
loan to help improve Cuba's telecommunications network.

A Chinese credit also will be invested in Cuban television, a spokesman
of China's diplomatic mission told AFP, without specifying the amount.

In addition, Beijing donated nine million dollars, offered an official
credit in the same amount, and provided a one-million-dollar
preferential line of credit, all for in projects determined
by Cuba's government.

The two nations also broadened cooperation in areas such as traffic
signal systems, and animal husbandry.

Wu is to hold talks with senior Cuban officials, and meetings have not
been ruled out with and , the
revolutionary icon who handed the presidential reins to his younger
brother last year.

The visit coincides with a trip to Asia by Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno
Rodriguez, who was in Beijing on Wednesday.

China is a vital source of funding for Cuba, and is its second largest
trading partner after , with annual bilateral trade reaching
about 2.6 billion dollars.

AFP: China grants $600 mln to Cuba during solidarity visit (3 September
2009)
http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5g1myeXlNIkcsKbBIh0s88TgtiU1g

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