Sugar is the chief cash crop which supports the economy of Cuba, and workmen like this one operating a pressing machine in the Ignacio Agramonte refinery have proved that they can run the complicated industrial equipment confiscated from U.S. companies. But they are handicapped by a bad cane harvest this year and by a critical shortage of spare parts. Almost all of Cuba’s heavy machinery and rolling stock came originally from the U.S. Now it is wearing out and there simply are no parts for repairing it. Cubans are clever at making parts and they have set up entire factories for this purpose, but still there are long queues of workers applying for permission to buy the few parts available. Conditions in Cuban industry probably will get even worse.
From Life magazine - Inside Castro’s Cuban Revolution - March 15, 1963