Brazil Grants 200 Million Loan to Cuba

HAVANA TIMES — The Minister of Development, Industry and Foreign Trade of Brazil, Fernando Pimentel, signed an agreement on Thursday in Havana granting a $200 million loan to the island for agricultural development.

The South American official, who has been in Cuba since August 28 on a formal visit, signed the agreement with Cuba’s minister of Foreign Trade and Investment, Rodrigo Malmierca, reported AFP.

“These funds will be released in three parts, the first in 2012 and the other two in 2013, and will finance the export [to Cuba] of Brazilian agricultural machinery and equipment,” specified the online statement.

Pimentel, who also met with Raul Castro, visited the $800 million Mariel Harbor development project, 85 percent of which is being financed by Brazilian capital.

Brazil is Cuba’s fifth largest trading partner, with trade between the two nations having grown by eight percent during the first half of this year, noted Prensa Latina news agency.