December 28, 2008 / 4:17 PM / 10 years ago

FACTBOX: Some key facts about Cuban society

(Reuters) - As Cuba prepares to mark the 50th anniversary of the revolution that put Fidel Castro in power on January 1, 1959, its people say they struggle to survive on low salaries.

Here are some facts about Cuban society:

* Cuba has a population of 11.2 million people.

* Cubans earn on average about $20 a month and many augment their salaries or make them go further by buying or selling on the black market where prices for goods, often stolen, are cheaper than in state-run stores.

* Cuba’s government says the average Cuban per capita income is $6,000 a year, including social benefits such as free health care and education and a subsidized monthly food ration.

* Cuba’s life expectancy is 77.9 years, just behind the United States at 78 years.

* Cuba has a 99.8 percent literacy rate, second only to the nation of Georgia, which has 100 percent, according to the U.N. Human Development Report.

Compiled by Jeff Franks; Editing by Kieran Murray

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