Overwhelmed by the high costs of services and Colombian and Brazilian competition, the most important company – of the two that exist in the country – decided to hang up the gloves while waiting for the storm to improve.
The ElCafé factory announces a stop just a few weeks after the government of Lenin Moreno announced as a huge achievement a juicy investment plan for the private sector. “We are going to stop the production of coffee for the domestic market on August 31, because that is where production is finished, which can be sold until the end of the year; everything that is export closes on July 31.”
The general manager, Bernardo Arosemena, told EXPRESO the conditions that are given and under which it is impossible to produce and export. Ecuador came to provide 8% of the world demand.
The local coffee crisis has made Ecuador import raw material from Vietnam, but there is a conditioning to deliver the premises: the purchase of local raw material, now expensive because Colombian importers deliver money in advance and pay a price on the value of the international marke.
The cost of the kilowatt hour of electricity, “the value of the cubic meter of water for the large margin that the public companies that provide these services earn”, make it impossible to compete with Colombian companies, which win market every year.
“The Colombian soluble factories do not have enough second and robusta coffee (variety) and although they can import legally robust coffee, they come to the East and pay 88 and 90 dollars in cash in advance.”
“If I had the conditions of 2013 I would be exporting 25 thousand tons of coffee to 200 million dollars; Today, the bunker has the highest price in history.”
In ElCafé, 527 people work in production and 98 in the other areas, according to the June payment role. It reached 1,200. “We’re not going to liquidate the staff, the idea is to wait for the government to do something.”
The export business will not change if there are no conditions, in 2013 it was at $ 0.06 per kilowatt hour, says Askley Delgado, president of the National Association of Exporters (Anecafé).
The National Association of Coffee Exporters (Anecafé) complains about legal insecurity. He points out that some official entities do not respect the decisions of the justice system or impose sanctions outside the legal framework, such as blocking huge accounts for litigation of small amounts.
Anecafé says that it’s represented ElCafé, the Municipality of Montecristi charges up to $ 1.50 per cubic meter of raw water without technical support; He expropriated land and the judge ordered him more than a year ago to pay him 4 million, something that has not happened so far. “This contempt drives investment away.” (I)