AP: Cuba banker says state has lent 'millions' to more than 13,000 farmers
- Here's the JR article to which the AP report is referring
Cuba banker says state has lent millions' to more than 13,000 farmers under ag initiative
By Associated Press, Updated: Sunday, July 10, 11:04 AM
HAVANA â" Cuba says it has extended more than 13,000 farm credits under an agricultural overhaul launched by President Raul Castro.
Ileana Estevez is president of the Banco de Credito y Comercio. She says state banks have lent âmillionsâ at interest rates ranging from 3 percent in the first years to a high of 7 percent.
Cuba began restructuring the agricultural sector in 2008, letting private farmers cultivate fallow state land. The initiative aims to reduce dependence on costly food imports and is part of a wider economic overhaul.
Farmers can work plots as big as 100 acres (40 hectares) in renewable agreements of 10 years for individuals and up to 25 years for cooperatives.
State newspaper Juventud Rebelde published Estevezâs comments Sunday.
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