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Most of Cuba hit by power outages: minister

Emergency blackouts in 7 Ukrainian regions after Russian strikes
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Large swathes of Cuba including the capital have been hit by power outages, authorities said, as the country grapples with a dire economic crisis.

“Almost the whole country has been affected since yesterday at 23:00 (03:00 GMT Saturday), including Havana,” Energy Minister Vicente de la O Levy told state television.

“There have been areas in the dark since the early hours of the morning,” and this has lasted “practically all day in almost the whole country,” he added.

Cuba has been experiencing a wave of blackouts since the start of March due to maintenance works on the Antonio Guiteras thermoelectric plant, the island’s largest.

Authorities have promised that the plant, located about 100 kilometers from the capital, will be fully operational again on Sunday.

This weekend, the situation was worsened by a shortage of fuel needed to generate the electricity.

The cash-strapped island nation imposed a more-than 400 percent fuel price hike earlier this month as part of an economic recovery plan.

De la O Levy said that “the situation will improve” somewhat, but that power supplies “will continue to be strained” due to Cuba’s financial hardships in importing oil.

The nation of 11 million is experiencing its worst economic crisis since the collapse of the Soviet bloc in the 1990s due to fallout from the coronavirus pandemic, the tightening of US sanctions in recent years and structural weaknesses in the economy.

According to official estimates, the Cuban economy shrank by two percent in 2023, while inflation reached 30 percent. Independent experts say this is likely an underestimation.

There are chronic shortages of fuel and other basics, and the government subsidizes almost all of the goods and services consumed by Cubans.


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Agence France-Presse (AFP) is a French international news agency headquartered in Paris, France. Founded in 1835 as Havas, it is the world's oldest news agency.

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