They are sectors that in the short term, starting from a year or less in the case of bananas and shrimp, since the tree is planted or the larva is sown, they generate resources.
However, the lack of policies from the State has not allowed society to take better advantage of the benefits not only of these two segments, but also of cocoa and fisheries.
These four segments of the economy made that in ten years (figures up to 2017) enter the country 58.705 million dollars for exports.
Its dependence on the external market and not the internal one is what encourages its development, contrary to what happens with short-cycle crops, whose lack of strategies causes a social explosion that has reached the streets for several days. The rice growers are dissatisfied with the “inoperance of the State”, said Francisco Barzola, from Daule (Guayas).
Submerged in low prices, as much as low productivity, rice faces it’s most complicated situation since the attack of the apple snail and the complex of diseases, says Mario Muñoz Zea, from the sector of La Cuca (El Oro), where 50% have disappeared of the rice surface.
The banana, much gives, little receives
While governments seek among the stones how to make the exportable offer bigger, they have a sector corked like a bottle of champagne.
An obsolete law prevents Ecuador from planting more bananas legally, thus benefiting those who seized the cake in the US market: Guatemala.
The banana growers have generated in ten years (2008-2017) no less than $ 23,470 million, money that is equivalent to 23 years the budget of the municipal administration at current value.
“It’s time to compensate for the damage,” says Richard Salazar Veloz, administrator of Acorbec (Banana Marketing and Export Association). “You have to reform the law.” Thus, metaphorically speaking, the cork could be extracted so that the banana emerges, like foam. The current law dates from 1997 in a market as changing and modern as the current one.
Jimmy Araujo believes that the sector has to be completely turned around, eliminating obstacles and persecutions that do not allow producers to be more efficient. Víctor Haón proposes to encourage new technologies.
Fishing will not get in good port
In ten years, fishing brought in 13,726 million dollars to Ecuador. But the figure has been disregarded by a State that wanted a change of productive matrix that did not curdle and belittled the raw materials. And for those who dedicate themselves to this diverse activity, the thrust was given the week that ends.
The government of Lenin Moreno not only suppressed his ministry, but also analyzes the elimination of the diesel subsidy. “That would be catastrophic,” says Lucía Fernández, president of the Chamber of Commerce of Manta and entrepreneur tuna.
“We are not 5 families that live on fishing: we are 300,000 people.”
Manta has 18 fish processors and the Ecuadorian tuna fleet is 119 purse-seine vessels, according to statistics from the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (CIAT).
Increasing the price of the diesel would be the end of the city. Depending on where they go fishing, each boat needs between 20,000 and 80,000 gallons and each one costs $ 0,90 if it is purchased directly. For Lucía Fernández, in the case of the Ministry, what the Government should have done is to reduce personnel excessively.
To the shrimp they leave it without breastplate
The disappearance of the ministry ends just when the minister Katuska Drouet lived the best of romances with the shrimpers, although the worst with a group of fishermen (Federation of Fisheries Cooperatives).
In the course of this “honeymoon” there were many benefits for this sector: electrification to the shrimp farms of the Gulf of Guayaquil, tax reduction for the purchase of raw materials and supplies. Although never the Ecuadorian State encouraged the development of this industry, which has generated between 2008 and 2017 more than 15,860 million dollars.
The worst crises (white spot, gull syndrome, Taura syndrome) were lonely.
“The sectors will lose direct attention to solve their problems that come from generational abandonment just because they were merged and the extension of services for agriculture took shares,” says Mónica Mora, producer of El Oro.
“Weakened in the attention we lost everything”, remarks in relation to the disappearance of the newly created Ministry of Aquaculture and Fisheries.
Cocoa and State, in contrary ways
The product that financed the independence of Spain, which slows the migration of the countryside to the big cities and that has generated Ecuador, in ten years, $ 5.647 million, has sailed in the turbid waters of a changing and speculative international market.
Internally, the previous government, according to the producers, spent money in excess, without results, with a supposed minga and delivery of plants that did not give the expected productivity, while the producers invested without state support in small properties that have been growing up to 600,000 hectares.
Not even in the strategy to avoid problems in foreign markets for a supposed excess of cadmium the Government has had results, the negotiations have gone in the opposite direction to what they want producers, reflects the researcher Ana Lema.
However, it is the agricultural sector with the highest growth thanks to the use of the CCN-51 variety, the improvement of national clones and a stable production in relation to its competitors in Africa. Large companies continue buying Ecuadorian haciendas. (I)