Latin American Network Information Center - LANIC


Chuquicamata Speech

Santiago Chile Domestic Service in Spanish 2321 GMT 14 Nov 71 C

[Speech by Cuban Prime Minister Fidel Castro at the main square of
Chuquicamata, Chile--live]

[Text] Civilian and military officials, representatives of political and
social organizations, miners, and people of Chuquicamata: Minutes ago I was
asking a comrade leader whether I should say Chuquicamat or Chuqui. Which
was preferred? He answered, [words indistinct], better say Chuquicamata,
even though those who come from the outside perhaps do not know how to
pronounce Chuquicamata.

In any case he, a labor leader, said Chuqui, and it seems to me that Chuqui
is an endearing word. So, when I talk from here I will say Chuqui. Do you
agree? We were frightened when we came to this spot. We were told it is
very high, 3,000 meters, and that there is not much oxygen here. In other
words, in some people heights produce fever, uneasiness. They said, be
careful you do not faint in Chuqui.

Anyway, we have tried not to faint. This afternoon I was doing some
breathing exercises, taking deep breaths to take in all the oxygen
possible, as I did not want such a problem to arise precisely at this
event. Fortunately, we have been touring the mines, the installations, and
we feel perfectly well up to now. There are some things that do more harm
than the lack of oxygen--I mean hurt the heart. There are some emotions
which really hurt above all when they are strong.

Today we felt a genuinely deep emotion when we heard the anthems of Chile
and Cuba. We stood here, 3,000 meters up, before this panorama, where one
can discern the work of past Chileans, where one can discern the Chileans
who carried out that campaign--that panorama which has been witness to all
your and your predecessors' efforts over such a long time.

To realize what work has been done by the Chilean copper workers, one need
only look at this amphitheater, this pit that is almost 400 meters deep.
This gives an idea of how much sweat, how much sacrifice, how much labor
has been expended year by year, month by month, day by day, to be able to
draw forth uncountable quantities of copper--of the resources with which
nature generously endowed the Chilean people.

Now you can see mammoth machines, huge steamshovels which scoop up 12-13
cubic yards, and dump trucks which carry (?100 tons). We thought of those
who operate the steamshovel, the trucks, and the modern machinery, and how
man began to scrape out those terraces.

If other people of the ancient world built huge works, which they are still
proud of--some built huge temples, others built vast roads, others built
pyramids--and if their people became famous for them, so too, one day also,
a monument will remain here to do honor to the generations which have
worked in these mines; these gigantic terraces, which the copper workers
have dug at this site.

So here too is being built a monument, the monument of work, above all,
hard work--and which like other hard work has called for the investment of
energy, sweat, and lives. Here and there can be seen reminders of men who
have died working in copper, digging the soil for decades and years,
digging deeper and deeper meters in search of copper--to the north, east,
west, and south, and into the depths of the earth, without it yet being
known where the copper will end, without the full dimension of its depth
being known.

Apparently, for decades and decades you copper workers will keep drawing
forth the wealth nature is offering you. However, at this point there is a
new circumstance which makes your work even more noble, even more
honorable, which makes every drop of sweat you shed even more worthwhile.
This circumstance is that this copper belongs entirely to the Chilean

Those machines, those installations, the cost of which was infinitely less
than the great sums drawn from the sweat of the Chilean workers, which went
outside of Chile for decades upon decades of work--those installations now
belong entirely to the Chilean nation.

Moreover, everything that is obtained henceforth, everything that is
developed in this mining center will go to serve, through you, the Chilean

You are, or are one of the two, biggest copper producers in the world.
Perhaps this center is the biggest. I know that Chile holds second place,
but no mine is bigger than this huge mine, no mine produces more--that I

Nature similarly endowed us with mineral resources. We have tremendous
deposits of nickel. It is said they are the best in the world. From what I
know, there is as much nickel in our country as there is copper in Chile.
Our nickel mines are also open-pit. Of course we have no need to dig such
banks, these terraces, this pit.

We wanted to talk of open-pit mining. We imagined that you gathered ore the
same way we do nickel, if there is clay or other soil with a nickel
content. Now we realize that this is not exactly the same. You seek the
deposits from above, in an open pit, digging downward.

We have vast expanses, somewhat like the nitrate fields. We must remove the
vegetation and then the ore is scraped with bulldozers and steamshovels,
and it is transported by truck to the smelters. Apparently copper is freer
than nickel, I mean that nickel requires bigger investments. We have a lot
of nickel, but if we want to produce say 30,000 tons of nickel, 30,000 to
40,000 tons of nickel, we must spend $350.8 million in installations.

Of course nickel brings higher prices. At times the price of nickel has
risen to (?$5,000) a ton, but the normal price ranges between $2,000 or
$2,500 to $3,000, but the investment must be made (?first).

Our country is engaged in (?expanding) nickel production. Many problems of
all kinds must be faced. We have a plant in production which produced
nickel sinter. This has a high percentage of nickel--I do not remember if
it is 90 or 86 percent nickel--no, we do not yet have installations for
producing metallic nickel.

The other plant uses a chemical process, and produces nickel sulphide. This
second plant had not been completed when the revolution triumphed. Through
special effort, however, and with tremendous work, Cuban engineers
completed it and this second plant is now beginning to produce.

We are striving to build new nickel-producing plants. This undoubtedly
calls for bit outlays and this is not easy. Furthermore, we will have to
face problems in selling the nickel. This is because those who own nickel
exert tremendous pressure--I mean the former owners of the nickel, the same
who formerly owned these copper mines.

Thus, they have taken all kinds of action. They even put over an agreement
that no steel that contained Cuban nickel could be imported into the United
States. They also did other things to hamper the sale of nickel.

The companion of nickel was copper. Now, there is a widespread need for
copper. They could not get anyone to stop buying Chilean copper, as there
is a great need for Chilean copper and we do not entertain the slightest
doubt that you shall have all the markets you need for copper. [sentence

When we were coming here this morning, heading for this spot, we tried to
begin thinking: Of what importance is copper to Chile? Of what importance
is this mine to Chile? We realized what copper prices and the production of
this mine and the nation were, and what influence problems linked to the
price and production of copper had on the Chilean economy. We thought of
the prices that prevailed last year, the present prices.

We summed all this up. We estimated that with the production, the exports,
last year--685 million, or rather 685,000 tons, the exports ran 665,000
[figures as heard]--we thought: What did a 1-cent difference in price--1
cent more or 1 cent less--mean to Chile's economy? We found it meant $14.6
million. In other words, every 1-cent drop in price meant $14.6 million
less in foreign exchange for Chile's economy.

Last year the price at times reached 72 cents. Between May and June it did
not reach 70 cents, but it was always from 65 to 70, if I remember
correctly. Yet this year the price dropped a lot. Now, in recent days, last
month, the price of copper--last year it reached 72 cents--was 48 and 49

The price difference for 665,000 tons between 72 cents and 48 cents is
approximately $350 million. In other words, those problems with prices--and
we also have had those problems because we are sugar producers and we
produce millions of tons of sugar, and also each cent in the price of pound
of sugar, each cent less means for us almost $100 million. One is actually
amazed over these price fluctuations, which frequently are the result of
(?the impact of) international events, [words indistinct] of all this type
of problem.

[Words indistinct] which means reflection, but even at 48 cents, at 50
cents per pound, each ton less means $1,000 less for the Chilean economy.

According to the production of this mining center, one day's production in
this mine means $1 million in foreign exchange for the Chilean economy, $1
million for each day of production in this mine. Ten tons less in 360 days
are $3.6 million at 50 cents, 100 tons less are $36 million. Now, what a
country can do with $36 million in foreign exchange can be translated into
many things, into anything in which it may invest.

Suffice it to say, for example, that our country has a program for basic
secondary schools. We planned to build schools in the field and now (?we
have) about 1,000 basic secondary schools. One aspect, those schools have
laboratories--chemistry, biochemistry, and biology--so that the teaching
can be of maximum quality. The cost in foreign exchange to equip every
school with a laboratory, [words indistinct] all teaching materials, is
$5,000. In our program, 1,000 schools at 500 students each which would have
a total capacity of half a million basic secondary students, would cost us
for laboratories at least $15 million in foreign exchange. This means that
a 100 tons' daily output, for instance, if it were produced in 1 year,
would net enough resources here to buy laboratories for approximately 2,500
basic secondary schools--the technical equipment for giving the best
instruction to 1.25 million youths.

One idea we have, for instance, is a plastic shoe factory. It probably has
a production capacity of (?100) million pairs of shoes annually.

[Words indistinct] if the raw material is available, 660 billion [as heard]
pairs of shoes would be produced. If you want to convert this into cattle,
for instance, $36 million in foreign exchange, very good cows could be
bought, high quality cows capable of producing 15 liters of milk daily.
Each cow would cost you $360 in foreign exchange. They would cost less if
you transport them, if you take them to pasture. You could buy 100,000 cows
with $36 million in foreign exchange. If with that [words indistinct] you
put 60,000 or 65,000 to produce, you could obtain 1 million liters of milk
daily with the cattle which can be imported with $36 million. This would
mean half a liter of milk daily for 2 million children, with the milk cows
which could be purchased with $36 million. That is simply the difference of
100 tons daily.

Today when we visited the ore concentrating plant, we had been on the go
for hours because we had to attend the luncheon. We have had to attend a
few luncheons. It is not that there is no food, no, you have tried to treat
us the best possible, but essentials only--and very light breakfasts and on
the run. [words indistinct]

How wonderful it would be if 2 million workers could be given daily--for we
were given by some workers--good milk. We have many workers who perform
hard work in foundries. There is an attempt to augment their nutrition by
giving them one-third of a liter. I am sure this makes them feel better. In
carrying out these programs we develop our agriculture. I note this to
impress you with what 100 tons could mean for the Chilean people.

To understand well the value of encouragement one must convert one thing to
something else--one year's production into schools and hospitals. I am
speaking of 1 year, if it is 10 years, multiply everything I have estimated
here times 10.

If you speak of 2,500 schools it would mean 25,000 schools. It would not be
laboratories for 2,500, 2.5 million students, but laboratories for 12.5
million students. It would not be 100,000 cows, but 1 million cows. [words

If you convert this to transportation--and I imagine that many times there
may be (?difficulties) because working as in our company [words indistinct]
every so many hours and other problems--if you convert to imported
transportation, one could buy almost 2,000 air conditioned buses with $36
million in foreign exchange. These 2,000 buses would have the capacity to
constantly transport 100,00 persons.

We are analyzing everything concerning foreign exchange resources so that
we can decide which of the many problems we have can be solved with such
foreign exchange. If you also consider the problems of the foreign debts
which accumulated over many years, and all types of payments, you would
understand perfectly well the importance each ton of ore has for Chile--the
value each ton of ore has for every Chilean. We saw these installations,
the existing problems. We had heard of the tailing which controls stability
in ships. We could not imagine that this tailing was a mound of materials
which had to be extracted and transported. We did not understand this
problem very well. [Words indistinct] until finally today we stopped in the
pit. One engineer--chief of the mines--was able to explain in detail to the
newspapermen and to us what the tailing problem was all about. Now we
understand it.

The mine must go deeper, and in order to do so there must be room. In order
to have room, widening is necessary, and for widening one must remove
materials--the ore-less waste. Under that there are reserves for working
the mine for 18 months. When the mines were nationalized, however, there
were reserves left for 6, less than 6 months, and 30 million tons of
tailing has to be extracted--each ton meaning a cost of $1. You therefore
know that if you convert all this into the same things we were speaking of
previously, you could tell me what could be done with $30 million. Well,
this is the amount that must be expended now in order to place the mine in
normal operation--because the banks, or the slopes cannot be more than 13,
15, or 16 meters. Yet there are, toward the west of the mine, some slopes
that have 23 meters and slopes with more than 30 meters. This constitutes a
serious problem. This constitutes a danger for the workers who must work
there. This forces the mine to obtain a great number of new shoveling
cranes. It forces the mine to make great expenditures for trucks to
transport this waste. Therefore, as a result of this, you must spend $15
million in foreign exchange to correct the inheritance of waste they left

You must increase production, and expand production, and work with safety
for the workers, but we believe that you will be able to solve that
problem. We have been seeing all the important installations. Regrettably
we could not go to the shops--the roundhouses as you call them. [Words
indistinct- we then saw the smelter, the grinding mills, and shops which
are very important shops in this mining industry, and the refinery shops,
and the refining and molding shops, in short, all the essential points.

There, we had the opportunity to learn how important the converters are for
production, and there is the plan to expand each converter from a daily
capacity of 180 tons to 240 tons. The plan for the tumbler will provide
sufficient capacity to increase production. The ore concentration plant
also has a capacity to increase production. With the expansion of the
converters, ad some other tasks, other revampings to raise the production
capacity of different installations 150,000 tons more could be produced
annually. Note this well, not envisaging 72 cents but 50 cents per round,
this mine could net Chile $150 million more per year on foreign exchange.
Then, if you convert those $150 million in whatever you want--school
equipment, transport equipment, cows, whatever you want--let me tell you to
multiply by five what we were pointing out here. Multiply by five, and
think how many benefits the economy would receive annually.

Many of the things that are consumed, and they are many, would come from
that money. Many of the (?products) that you use would not have to be
imported. Moreover, I am speaking broadly, we would have to discount the
investments in machinery, some productive investments, but I am doing it in
broad outlines. You count the money and multiply it times 10 years.
Multiply $150 million in foreign exchange times 10 years. This means $1.5
billion. Figure out what increasing the present production of 750 tons
daily to the suggested 1,100 could mean to the Chilean economy. If 1,100
cannot be reached then 1,050. Think what it means for the Chilean economy
to raise production to 1,050 or 1,100 tons daily by taking advantage--in
many cases--of existing capabilities and producing relatively few
additional investments.

As we were going through the shops and seeing what copper means to Chile,
we were meditating. Copper is truly a blessing by nature for the Chilean
nation. It is what nitrate used to be, a source of important income which
then resulted in [words indistinct] problems. Copper plays a decisive role,
and it is said that at the present time, some 33 percent of the foreign
exchange earned by Chile comes from the Chuquicamata mines, 33 percent. If
production were increased to 1,050 tons daily, foreign exchange earnings
would unquestionably increase proportionately. The country needs this
foreign exchange because none of our countries can produce all products.
You, for example, need these trucks to remove the scoria, but these trucks
are (?not) manufactured in Chile. Perhaps you may manufacture some parts.
Manufacturing the wheels for these trucks, which cost $4,000 each, and
apparently the wheels for these trucks only cost $1.6 million, that is
$1,600,000 per year.

Therefore, when the Chilean nation can produce these wheels it would begin
to save a portion of these expenditures. It must, of course, import certain
products, but hundreds of thousands of dollars are saved which you can
invest in other things, to [words indistinct] economy of the country, to
increase the sources of employment, to improve the situation of all the
workers and others. Now this equipment must be imported. When you need a
crane with a capacity for 15 square meters, 15 square yards, you must
import it. When you need to acquire airplanes to open air routes, you must
import them. When you need to acquire locomotives for railroad tracks, you
must import them.

When you need electrical power and you must buy great centers for
generating electrical power-and everything here moves by electricity--but
in order to have electricity there must be the centers for generating it
and you must spend millions and millions in foreign exchange to acquire
those forces abroad, without which you cannot produce electrical energy,
all these machines would not move, all the thermoelectric plants would not
move, practically nothing would move.

One must invest foreign currency if one wants to speak of any means of
transportation [words indistinct] over a longer-term. It would have been
interesting to translate $36 million to $50 million into merchant ships.
How many Chileans would be given employment per month? How many millions
would the Chilean nation save transporting many of those products for which
it has to spend money so that other ships from other countries can
transport the products?

Ships from other countries transport the products before they spoil, and
those products both leave and enter the country. If you want to increase
the production of fish--you, who have vast seas which are very rich in
fish, which have magnificent fish--and if you want to form a fishing fleet
to provide work for more thousands of Chileans, you also have to make great
expenditures for these ships and that is economic development.

The country needs many industries. All our countries are enumerating the
things which are happening to us, and we always analyze what we do and now,
this is a development program--not a development program to enrich anyone
in particular--a development program to enrich the Chilean nation; a
development program to increase the number of jobs, to create wealth which
will serve Chileans. This nation is still far from having all its needs
satisfied. There must be many schools, much educational material to [words
indistinct] such a great number of people. We still need many hospitals,
medical equipment, medicines and pharmaceutical industries. The people need
housing--hundreds of thousands of homes, millions of homes. Our people need

Our peoples need irrigation systems, dams, to increase food production, to
raise the standard of living of the people. Our peoples need
everything--all kinds of industries, synthetic industries, modern
industries--in order to keep up with civilization, to achieve the ideal of
a better fate for mankind for which generations have sacrificed themselves.
All this is achieved through work. Many of those industries depend
precisely on the exportable resources that one may have--each one of those
new industries must be purchases, it cannot be produced in the country. If
we want to have an iron and steel industry, we want to have an industry
capable of producing big machines, then our countries must make great
investments and great expenditures.

We found our country so underdeveloped that we did not even produce
corrugated steel for construction. The quantities of cement produced? Very
little. Installations must be made to produce steel, industrial
installations to produce steel for construction, new cement factories. We
do not have the great lumber resources which you have, and those buildings
must therefore, of course, be made of cement and steel. We have had to make
many investments. This is the situation in all our countries--all our
countries need to make those investments.

One problem is that our countries are small. So what happens? What happens
is that one of those big industries requires a big market. Let's say you
want to make large trucks of that type, you say, well, but we need 10 per

We do not have a market. Yes, but to the extent that ties develop among the
Latin American peoples, to the extent that economic ties develop--those
ties will, of necessity, by the law of history and in the interest of our
peoples, have to develop--some day (?each) country will build a big factory
for something and will supply the brother countries.

Chile can have great ties in certain fields and supply the other countries,
sell those products [interrupted for station identification and list of
frequencies after which announcer says: "The Cuban Prime Minister, who was
holding a discussion with the copper workers, added:"] The heroism of
work--that daily heroism. That heroism of men who are building something.
That heroism which is the heroism of men who are building the future of
their country. It is not easy. That task is not easy. Often it is not easy
for men to understand--we have known men who have great courage to fight,
who give their lives--who are capable of being heroes someday. (?Take you,
for instance)--to give it all in a day--but that is why we preach daily
heroism, the heroism of these workers--who are selflessly, quietly, trying
to do the most and the best they can for their country. Today we have seen
encouraging things, very encouraging things at this center.

Here, in the mines, we saw workers full of enthusiasm, loading trucks with
scoria, with the 30 million [tons] of waste which was left here-workers who
worked on the dawn shift, and on Sunday. There they were, loading scoria,
cleaning up and loading waster [words indistinct] These workers today set
an extraordinary example--that highly admirable example of the man who
unselfishly hastens to fulfill a duty. Put me to work helping to help my
country; put me to work sweeping away that bad inheritance which they left
us; put me to work saving this historic mine; put me to work defending this
work of so many generations of Chileans. There they are-- unselfish,
resolute, with a smile on their lips.

We have talked with many workers and we have been very impressed with
them--workers who have been doing extra work--on their own, voluntarily,
unselfishly--here in the ]mines, and workers who were working their
scheduled shifts in the workrooms. We have spoken with many technicians. We
have spoken with workroom bosses. We have chatted with them at length. We
have asked hundreds of questions which arose from the great curiosity which
all this awakens in us. We have said that we have learned more here about
copper in one day than we could with a 6-month course on the copper
industry in some school. In these 6 hours we untiringly, incessantly tried
to gather much data, much information, and we have also been able to see
what a magnificent mine this is, what extraordinary resources there are,
what good installations the mines have--installations which must be
maintained, installations which must be taken care of--we have seen how
well-organized it is--an organization which must be taken care of. We must
not forget a detail--spontaneity does not solve problems.

The fact that something is just does not mean the problems will solve
themselves. The fact that something is noble and good is not enough (?to
make it look) good. The former owners of these installations, because it
was in their own interest, tried to maintain the best possible organization
in the flow of production. They raised to obtain, to achieve maximum
discipline, they achieved it through diverse means--sometimes paying more,
sometimes through pressure, sometimes through the use of psychology, giving
prizes here and there, using all kinds of artifices and tricks in order to
achieve organization, in order to achieve discipline. How different when
the nation replaces the foreign proprietors. When the mines and those
resources fall into the nation's hands, but [words indistinct] organization
must be taken care of.

The machines must be maintained. Discipline must be maintained. If before
there was discipline to enrich foreign countries--and not to enrich the
Chilean nation, not to enrich the Chilean workers, not to raise the level
of well-being of the Chilean people--with much more reason must the
workers, aware of their duty, maintain and improve the organization,
maintain and increase work discipline.

The workers who are conscious of their duty should maintain and improve
their organization, maintain and raise work and discipline. For [applause]
if in the past this was done with no profit to the fatherland and the
people, today, when all this--when all the copper you extract is to serve
the Chilean people, the Chilean people--there is much more reason now to
exert yourselves. We have said frequently: It is much easier to change
structures than to change man's own mental attitude. Social structures are
changed, often with arduous work, for it takes work to change structures,
it takes work to change habits.

A change is a new situation deriving from many years of struggle, a battle
between the interests of the country and foreign interests--a conflict
between the interests of the working class and the interests of those who
exploited the workers. When circumstances change and the conflict
disappears, when the interest of the nation and the working class are one
and the same--the same interest of the workers of this mining center, the
same interests of this center's production and operation--then one must
seek to act so these interests always advance together.

We realize this is not easy. We realize that for this there must be
patience; there is no need to be impatient. There must not be the slightest
loss of faith. We have infinite confidence in the workers, and we know how
they always respond, they know how to realize their duty. For gentlemen, a
worker is a worker.

Workers must work hard under many conditions, with or without machines. If
a worker has to be manning one of those shovels, he must spend many hours
on the alert, performing an important task. If he must drive one of those
trucks, even with power steering, he must drive for hours over those rough
roads--constantly going up and down to transport the ores. If he works in a
ship he is under day-long tension. If he works at a converter, if he is at
a tumbler or any equipment, or any other machine, he must work diligently.

That is a man's work. These circumstances, that exertion, that life, is
what inspires the worker, what strengthens the workers--that man who knows
what work is, who knows how to make any sacrifice, always responds to the
country's interests. He always responds to the interests of his people. He
is always in the forefront when his country needs him, when his fatherland
needs him. [applause]

The impression we get from talking to these workers throughout the day,
talking with the workers charged with directing the shops, is a splendid
impression--because of the way they work, their aptitude, their
intelligence, their training. We have witnessed how they master their
trade, how they grasp and resolve problems.

We do not think the road is an easy one. We do not believe the march
forward will be easy. You must discern each part that is needed, every
individual thing that must be maintained, how supplies are obtained. The
most difficult things--not the easiest-- must be kept in mind. If it is
thought that everything will be easy, simple, that we need only to wait for
the next arrival of spare parts, then we find ourselves before [words

We usually do this: We think about the most difficult choice; the problem
could be solved an easy way, but what would be the hardest way? When one
envisages the most difficult way, the easiest way means nothing.

One must always be prepared for the most difficult problems. This is all

As for the issue of how the nation's (?export) industries should work, we
tell our compatriots that the awareness of the people and the workers will
have attained the highest level when they are capable of working much
better as free men than they worked as enslaved and exploited men.
[applause and chanting]

The world needs and will always need more and more copper. That is a big
market for copper. We cannot be a big market for copper, we are a small
country. Our mechanical industry is not very developed, and we do not have
a metal-processing industry. We will always need a certain amount of
copper, however. Our factories produce some electrical wire.

So, we shall be small clients, but copper clients nonetheless. We have some
tiny mines, but we have no smelters. We have just enough plants to smelt
the copper we mine. Because of this, whatever ore is produced has
traditionally been exported.

We do not process any, and we do not have any steam now, so we can buy from
you electrical wire and some copper products to meet our needs. We too have
a force of copper workers. The main mines [words indistinct] that produce
4,000 tons yearly. They are not open mines, but are deep down in the earth.
Our principal mine has been idle for almost a year, but do not think there
has been a strike--there was no strike. On the contrary, living conditions
at that mine were not good for the workers. This mine has almost 1,500
meters of vertical shafts. It was not safe, it is full of cracks. It had
been exploited for more than a century. Exploitation was halted because of
poor working conditions and lack of safety for the workers. Excellent
working conditions have now bee provided and operations will be resumed at
the end of this year.

Our copper workers are magnificent workers--magnificent. They have a grand
spirit, a grant enthusiasm. They have been working very hard on the
reconstruction of our mines. They are a real vanguard. Cuban mine
workers--nickel workers--posses a great work spirit, and have been making
great contributions to the country's economy. Our nickel mines--we are
somewhat strong in nickel--have provided us with 120, 130, 140, and as much
as 200 million [dollars] in foreign currency. Of course, income depends on
price fluctuations.

We bring you greetings from our miners, especially from our copper workers
of Matahambre, which is the mine that we have been talking about here. I do
not know why the town is called Matahambre. In that area we are producing
some zinc, lead, and other minerals. We bring you greetings and a voice of
solidarity from our people, greetings from our miners. We would like you to
contact our workers. If you will establish such a contact with our workers,
with our people, we will promise you that we will not [words indistinct] in
20 years. [laughter]

Yesterday, we visited the nitrate workers. We talked about sports. As you
know, Cuban has had much experience in sports. We have competed in
international contests with U.S. athletes. We have had great victories in
sports events. The medals won by Cuban and other Latin American countries
number more than those won by the United States. In the past, the United
States used to try to promote an inferiority complex among Latin American
countries because we were never able to equal them. But now, many of the
sports in which they used to be champions are now ours. Believe it or not,
Cuba is world champion baseball. We must not say how this came about.
[laughter] The world championship games are coming around again. The United
States will not even participate this time because they known beforehand
that they will lose. [laughter and applause]

They invented baseball, but we beat them at the recent games in Cuba; they
invented basketball, but the Cuban team gave them a beating; they invented
boxing, but the Cuban team gave them a beating in boxing. We graduate a few
physical education instructors yearly. We do not have many. There is not
very much that we can do, but in Antofagasta we saw serious sports problems
among workers. Maybe we will send you some experts. We will discuss the
matter later. This is a modest cooperation which we offer wholeheartedly.
We offer this cooperation with due respect. We will talk with you leaders
tonight, and maybe we can do something small to help.

We are interested n maintaining contacts, and would like you to visit us
also. Maybe we could exchange outstanding workers yearly. Your workers who
have won recognition for their efforts could visit us and ours could visit
you. The workers of our little mines could visit Chuquicamata. This would
be a pleasure and an honor. [applause] This exchange of workers, of a
cultural nature, and all types would be very good to develop even more the
great affection and solidarity between us. This solidarity is not merely
verbal, but actual.

We assure Chilean workers and people that they have our full and unselfish
support under any circumstance. You can be sure that this offer is real and
objective. Chile can count on Cuba 100 percent at any time and under any
condition. [applause] Action speaks louder than words. One's feelings
cannot be expressed at times, but they will reflect in our deeds. Your
affection for Cuba has been reflected in your actions much better than your
words will ever be able to express. In the same way, our acts will always
reflect the feelings we are unable to express in words. Thank you.