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Cuba appoints 56-year old Manuel Marrero Cruz as the First Prime Minister Since 1976

  • Manuel Marrero Cruz, the 56-year old tourism minister of Cuba, has been appointed by Cuban President Miguel Díaz-Canel as the first Prime Minister of the country in over 40 years (the PM’s post was scrapped by the revolutionary leader Fidel Castro in 1976). The newly-appointed prime minister will assume some of the responsibilities that are now handled by the President. As per Cubadebate, the state-run online news outlet, “the head of government will be the administrative right hand of the president of the republic.” On Saturday, the deputies in the National Assembly ratified the appointment of Manuel Marrero Cruz as the new PM. Granma, the state-owned newspaper, has called Marrero a politician who emerged from the base of the tourism industry. His ascension to prominence started when he became the president of the military-run Gaviota tourism group (which has been sanctioned by the Trump administration) in 2000. He was appointed as the tourism minister by Fidel Castro in 2004 and he is praised for boosting the industry and also maintaining a cordial relationship with the foreign investors.