Bolivia's new president-elect, an outspoken leftist, says Cuba deserves praise for the example it has set for Latin America and the rest of the world.

Evo Morales, who declared himself the winner of Bolivia's presidential election on Sunday, told Havana's state-run television Monday that he thanks the Cuban government for - as he put it - showing the world how to live in dignity and sovereignty.

Official election results have not been released in La Paz, but Mr. Morales' chief rival, conservative Jorge Quiroga, has conceded defeat. The new president, a 46-year-old former coca grower, says he intends to reverse a U.S.- backed campaign to eradicate the crop. Coca plants are the source of the main ingredient in cocaine.

Mr. Morales also says he wants to increase government control over Bolivia's vast natural gas resources.

Some information for this report provided by AFP and Reuters.