Cuba's Raul Castro visiting trading partner China

Posted on Wednesday, 07.04.12

Cuba's Raul Castro visiting trading partner China
The Associated Press

BEIJING -- Cuban leader Raul Castro is visiting key trading partner China for talks with President Hu Jintao and other leaders in Beijing.

Castro arrived Wednesday to begin a four-day visit. Cuban state media said he was accompanied by Vice President Ricardo Cabrisas Ruiz and Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez. Neither side has said what issues are to be discussed.

Castro visited Vietnam and China while defense minister, a post he occupied from 1959 until he replaced older brother Fidel as president in 2008.

During a 1997 trip to China, he spoke approvingly of the Asian giant's mixture of socialism and market liberalizations.

Cuba is China's biggest commercial partner in the Caribbean. Bilateral trade totaled $1.8 billion in 2010, state-run website Cubadebate said.