Cuba Exports Health Workers, Earns Petroleum Revenue

Over at Global Post, an article by reporter Nick Miroff reminds me why I like the news site so much. Here, I learned of a truly grassroots, innovative business venture, initiated by the Cuban government. And it’s ventures such as this one — exporting healthcare professionals in exchange for payment based upon current oil prices — that remind me to expect the unexpected, when it comes to global trade.

98 miles across the sea, Havana de la Cuba's waitin' for me...

It’s a clear sign that the island will come into clear, free market play within one generation from now. Miroff writes, “Through service agreements that send Cuban doctors, nurses and other skilled professionals to energy giants like Venezuela, Angola and Algeria, the Cuban government is compensated on a sliding scale pegged to the price of oil.”

Already, “…last year, the island accumulated a $3.9 billion trade surplus, and services — such as health care — accounted for $9.4 billion out of $13.6 billion in total export revenue.”

Granted, the money goes into government accounts. But, it’s this sort of publicly-administered project that will, so easily, move into a privatized venture, as Cuba emerges into 21st-century free markets. First up will be expansion of the island’s domestic oil production, followed eventually by support services and privatization of the power grid.

Check out this and other excellent Global Post articles here.

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