Cuban President Scaling Back Economic Role

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Cuban President Raul Castro has said his government is going to reduce state control of the Cuban economy.

Castro told the Cuban Parliament Sunday changes are needed because of the country's economic crisis.

"With experience accumulated in more than 55 years of revolutionary struggle, it doesn't seem like we're doing too badly, nor that desperation or frustration have been our companions along the way," Castro said.

The government plans to scale back control of small businesses, lay-off unnecessary workers, and allow more self-employment.

Castro pointed out that those who would be left out of work would be retrained or reassigned so they would not stay unemployed. But he also warned that few job sectors would be immune to job-cuts.

The moves are major steps for the Communist country that has dominated almost all aspects of its economy.

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