Cuba Excels at Millennium Development Goals

The 8 UN Millennium Development Goals

By Abby Belongy

A majority of Americans seem to have a negative view of Cuba.  They see extreme oppression, poverty, and lack of development and globalization with the rest of the world. Because of this, most would be surprised to learn that Cuba has already met most of the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) set for 2015.  The country’s infant and maternal mortality rates are some of the lowest in Latin America and the world,  respectively.  Additionally, all citizens have access to free public health and vaccinations.  With the blockade with the U.S. still going strong, Cuba is still increasing medical research, including AIDS/HIV prevention – one of the MDGs.

Cuba is also making strides in eradicating hunger and poverty, women’s equality, and increasing education for children.  UNESCO even ranked Cuba as 14th in the world for its high level of education.

While Cuba has accomplished some of the goals and is working toward others, many problems still exist.  Hunger and poverty have improved, but they are still far from good rates.  In February 2013, a Cuban delegate blamed some of these problems on the unfair global economy.  She asserted that countries in the South are affected much more negatively, and Northern cooperation and assistance is necessary to truly reach all the high goals and standards.

While Cuba reports that it has accomplished much on its own, it probably cannot progress much further without help from the U.S. and the rest of the developing world.  However, we aren’t likely to see that happen anytime soon.

Learn more about the mission of the MDGs:


One thought on “Cuba Excels at Millennium Development Goals

  1. I’m surprised how all Cuban citizens have access to free public health and vaccinations when here in America is still struggling to get free public health for its citizens. I agree that Cuba still has a lot of problems even it has already met most of the MDGs set for 2015. It’s kind of sad that how this country cannot progress much further without help from other countries, especially the U.S. However, I think it is unavoidable for developing countries to get help from other developed countries. For example, when South Korea was recovering from Korean War, it used to get help from its developed neighbor, Japan. Yet, Korea now has been a much more appealing Asian model than Japan since the crisis of 2008 (Sharma, 7). So, nowadays, other developing countries in South Asia, for instance Vietnam, get help from South Korea, one of the most developed countries in Asia that was once a poor, developing country in the 1960s.

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