Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
basic background: Ecuador is a member of OPEC
2013, Correa "sails to re-election on vows to deepen welfare reforms, but is it sustainable?, then Correa "ruling party" PAIS Alliance loses 2014-2019 local "Elections Heavily, Fears "Fascist Right" Destabilization"
2017, Correa affirms Assange's political asylum in Britain, while PAIS Alliance Lenín Moreno elected president (51%-49%) over "former-banker" Guillermo Lasso. Amid censorship, corruption and abandoned environmental promises Correa moves to Belgium.
2018, Correa, dragging 2012 kidnap charge, dodges extradition,"lawfare" protests
2019, Moreno inks $4.2 billion financing deal with IMF + "$6 billion in loans from multilateral institutions including the World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, and the CAF Andean development bank"
Moreno has begun to implement an austerity plan that includes layoffs of workers at state-owned companies and cuts to gasoline subsidies, also plans to find a private operator for state-run telecoms company CNT and other state-owned firms.

In his address, Moreno said most of the money would be dedicated to "social investment," citing a rising number of police officers and promising retirees they would not lose out on an annual bonus.

Skepticism of the IMF runs strong in Ecuador and throughout Latin America, where many blame Fund-imposed austerity policies for economic hardship.

End of fuel SUBSIDIES, 12 Oct 2019

The highland capital of Quito was rocked by a 10th day of clashes over Moreno's austerity plan, with the office of Ecuador's comptroller set on fire and access roads to Quito's airport blocked. TV channel Teleamazonas showed images of its own offices in flames and said its employees were unharmed.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Sun Oct 13th, 2019 at 06:01:23 PM EST
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`The drone revolution'
Zángano, the Spanish word for a male honey bee, otherwise known as a drone, is a slang term traditionally used by rich, elite parts of society to refer to workers and the poor, whom they denigrate as "mindless" or "uneducated."

The use of the term by Moreno, a close ally of Washington, reflected the president's resentful attitude toward ordinary Ecuadorians.

In short order, Moreno's opponents transformed the slang into a buzzword. ...

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Sun Oct 13th, 2019 at 07:09:34 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Ecuador cancels austerity plan in a bid to end unrest, 14 Oct
President Lenin Moreno will repeal the International Monetary Fund-backed measure, known as Decree 883, that included a significant increase in fuels. Indigenous leaders, in turn, will call on their followers to end 12 days of protests and street blockades. ...The news came as talks concluded in the capital, Quito, between Moreno and groups including the Confederation of Indigenous Nations (CONAIE).
Mercosur released a statement, along with Peru, Colombia and Chile, saying: "We endorse the efforts made by Ecuador's government to maintain peace, public order and democratic institutions by using the instruments provided by the constitution and the law." The bloc, which consists of Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay, added: "We condemn acts of violence and attempts to destabilize the country, its institutions and the Ecuadorian democratic process."
Ecuador arrests prefect after Moreno cancels austerity plan, 14 Oct
Ecuadorian authorities detained Pichincha Prefect Paola Pabon and other current and former officials, prosecutors announced Monday. Police also seized computers, telephones and documents. Pabon posted a video of the arrest to her Facebook page.

Prosecutors didn't elaborate on their reasons for arresting Pabon. However, over days of protests initiated by indigenous groups, President Lenin Moreno (center in photo) and surrogates accused his predecessor, Rafael Correa, and Venezuelan officials of conspiring with regional authorities and Colombia's FARC guerrillas to destabilize Ecuador.

The president alleged that Correa, Pabon, former Constituent Assembly member Virgilio Hernandez, who was also arrested, and others had traveled "at the same time a few weeks ago to Venezuela" -- which he does not consider "a coincidence." Correa and Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro have mocked Moreno's assertions.

Ecuador's Moreno announces tax reform after rolling back fuel price hike, 18 Oct
"The proposal includes a new tax on companies with annual revenue of more than $1 million, which he said would raise about $532 million over three years. ..."

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Sun Oct 20th, 2019 at 01:58:34 AM EST
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