The economic debate starred by President Rafael Correa and three analysts, one of them an active politician, was characterized by political arguments, memories of previous administrations and few answers about the future.
The only new thing was budgetary data for 2016. According to Correa, the general government budget will reach 25.700 million dollars next year. That is, 10.617 million dollars less than the approved this year.
Coming down of 29.7% responded, according to the president, to a necessary adjustment by the fall in oil prices. In one of his few interventions, Finance Minister Fausto Herrera said that investment priority will be given to the social sector.
The economic front revealed other data. The estimated price of a barrel of oil will be $ 35, $ 44 less than the estimated for 2015.
The need for funding will be about 6,600 million. Of this amount, Correa said, about 4,000 million are identified and about 2,000 million need to subscribe; so the budget deficit next year will be 2.4%.
Data, however, did not reassure the other members of debate. The former Minister of Economy, Mauricio Pozo, for example, found that government arguments are just trying to “cover the sun with a finger.”
With figures, statistics and specific cases, Pozo asked how the commitments will be overcome this year: December bonuses, the payment of foreign debt bonds -for 650 million dollars- and the possible failure in favor of OXY for nearly 2,000 million dollars. President Correa would only say that these items will be covered “with creativity.”
Among questionings to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and its estimates, Correa also admitted he would accept a multilateral credit entity “without compromising” the sovereignty of Ecuador.