April 11 - Cubans working in newly created cooperatives say there is more incentive to work and provide better quality services. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
The man running this night club in Havana is expecting better times ahead, as cooperatives take hold in Cuba. The cooperatives function independently of the state, and in most cases the businesses set prices according to the market. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) PRESIDENT OF KARABALI NIGHTCLUB COOPERATIVE, HECTOR GARCIA, SAYING: "At this point, we almost don't compete with the private clubs. I mean, they have better furniture. They have better things and they have invested much more money. Also they are doing well, but we are getting there. We will get there. We aren't going to give up. We are going to continue working, and we are going to get what we want, which is to be able to provide better service, with comfort and quality." The cooperatives come in all shapes and sizes. It's working out well for this cooperative taxi driver. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) COOPERATIVE TAXI DRIVER, ALEXI SANTOS, SAYING: "The more one works, the better the salary. More work equals more money because it gives more business to the cooperative and therefore more money." In 2011 the Cuban government outlined sweeping plans to revamp the Soviet-style economy including the creation of cooperative businesses.