Agencia Prensa Latina

Prensa Latina was born in Havana in June 1959. Today, it has a network of 32 bureaus in as many countries. Its founder was the journalist Jorge Ricardo Masetti, who prior to the establishment of the agency, interviewed the revolutionaries Fidel Castro and Ernesto Guevara. Prensa Latina was created with the support of the Ministry of Communications of the then emerging Cuban government. The agency also publishes the weeklies Orbe and Negocios en Cuba, the English-language newspaper The Havana Reporter as well as the magazines Avances Médicos de Cuba and Cuba Internacional. In its history, the agency had renowned contributors including Gabriel García Márquez and Rodolfo Walsh.

Media assets

News agency: Prensa Latina

Publishing: Orbe, Negocios en Cuba, The Havana Reporter, Avances Medicos de Cuba, Cuba Internacional

State Media Matrix Typology: State-Controlled (SC)

Ownership and governance

Prensa Latina operates as a not-for-profit organization belonging to the Cuban State, which appoints the agency’s management. It is not clear these days which entity in the Cuban government is in charge of appointing the management of the agency.

Source of funding and budget

There is no publicly available information about Prensa Latina’s budget. According to the official page of the agency, revenues from the sale of its content are reinvested in the agency’s activities, but they are hardly the main source of the agency’s financing. According to local journalists, the majority of Prensa Latina’s budget comes from the government.

Editorial independence

Prensa Latina has had in the past contributions from renowned journalists and writers, albeit all of leftist inclinations. Unlike ACN, Prensa Latina takes mostly a regional (Latin American) view in its editorial coverage. Its news agenda is very similar to the Venezuelan state-funded TeleSur. Very little criticism of the Cuban government is tolerated at the agency. Informal content analysis carried out by our local expert for this project found that most of Prensa Latina’s stories are about the activities and achievements of the president and his administration, high officials being always presented in a positive light.

There is no independent assessment mechanism and no statute that establishes the independence of Prensa Latina.

August 2023