Cuban Government Fires the President of the Central Bank Without Explanations

The recently dismissed president of the Central Bank of Cuba, Martha Wilson González, on television together with the official journalist Randy Alonso. (Cuban Presidency)

14ymedio bigger14ymedio/EFE, Madrid, 16 February 2023 — On Wednesday, the Cuban government dismissed the president of the Central Bank of Cuba (BCC), Martha Wilson González, after four years in office. Her position will be occupied by Joaquín Alonso Vázquez, until now president of the state Exchange Houses (Cadeca).

Without giving explanations about this movement, which takes place while awaiting a ruling by a London court on a debt of 72 million dollars from the Cuban State, the official site Cubadebate praises the figure of Alonso Vázquez, age 59, saying that “during his career he received postgraduate preparation, which technically and professionally qualify him to hold this position.”

Before starting to preside over Cadeca, in 2017, the official served in different positions in the state banking sector, from provincial deputy director of Banco Popular de Ahorro in Havana to vice president of Banco Popular de Ahorro.

In addition, he has held political positions, as a delegate of the National Assembly of People’s Power and vice president of the National Association of Economists and Accountants of Cuba in Havana, “with positive results,” reports Cubadebate.

As for Wilson González, who was appointed president of the Central Bank of Cuba in 2019, the official media outlet limited itself to saying that “the effort made was recognized and, consequently, other activities will be assigned to her.”

She is the second minister president of the BCC since the election as president of Cuba of Miguel Díaz-Canel, who this 2023 concludes the five years of his first term and is eligible for a second.

Joaquín Alonso Vázquez was, until now, president of Cadeca. (Havana Tribune)
Joaquín Alonso Vázquez was, until now, president of Cadeca. (Havana Tribune)

Dismissals of ministers are not common in Cuba. Parliamentary elections will be held this March and the new Legislature will nominate a president who will in turn form a new Council of Ministers.

Last October, the Energy and Mines Minister was replaced after months of long daily blackouts in much of the country. Liván Arronte then left office and Vicente de la O Levy took over.

At the beginning of the year, it came to light in an article in Cubadebate that the country’s international reserves had fallen by 2.55 billion dollars in two years (2019 and 2020), while international reserves amounted to 11.528 billion in 2018. The figures from the International Bank for Payments indicate that the deposits of Cuban banks, including the Central Bank, fell by 1.95 billion dollars between 2018 and 2020, a figure close to that disclosed in the official press.


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