09 December 2007

Cuba owes Mexico 500 Million

Mexico gives the Cuban government a chance to lift their credit rating:

Mexican Envoy: Mexico, Cuba To Re-Negotiate Debt

November 28, 2007 8:35 p.m.

HAVANA (AP)--Mexico's new ambassador to Cuba said Wednesday that his country will re-negotiate $500 million in debt that the communist-run island owes Mexico to improve strained relations between the nations.

Ambassador Gabriel Jimenez said both sides will meet several times next month and hope to reach a debt settlement plan by the end of the year, marking the first public acknowledgment of talks on the issue.

"I'm very optimistic," said Jimenez, who became ambassador in September. "I arrived at an absolutely fragile moment in Mexican relations with Cuba, and little by little, we're expressing the wishes of both governments to begin to get to know one another again."

Jimenez, a friend of Mexican President Felipe Calderon, said he has reassured his government that Havana has every intention of paying off its debt in time.

"Cuba wants to meet its obligations," he told reporters.

Debt discussions are likely to lead to bilateral talks on other thorny issues, including illegal immigration and human rights, as both sides are "now getting serious" about reconciliation, Jimenez said.

The following recording cannot help Mexico's status among those in Latin America who think that they get pushed around by the U.S.:


Cuba released a recording of Fox urging Fidel Castro to leave a summit to avoid confronting U.S. President George W. Bush later that year, embarrassing the Mexican leader. In 2004, the two nations temporarily withdrew their ambassadors.

and I'm truly not sure whose interest is best served by returning Cubans, but since Cubans can enter the US from Mexico I doubt many of them stick around in Mexico.

Calderon, a member of Fox's conservative National Action Party who took office in 2006, since said he wants to improve relations with Cuba.

Mexico would like to sign an immigration accord that might help repatriate Cuban migrants detained in Mexico or while trying to reach it, Jimenez said.