A week after the newspaper team of El Comercio was kidnapped on the northern border, the president of the Republic Lenin Moreno presented his economic plan.
Since then, the priority for the Government has been to resolve the critical situation.
On April 3, the Minister of Finance, María Elsa Viteri, announced that an urgent economic bill will be sent in maximum 15 days.
In the National Assembly they are waiting for the Executive to send the bill but the document still does not arrive.
The minister of Industries, Eva García, in an interview with EXPRESO, said that the articles will also include the investment law and that it is still being polished. “There is going to be a law that gathers all the orders. And something that is not mentioned too much, there is going to be an investment law that probably enters the same body, “Garcia said.
The president of the Economic Regime Commission, Pabel Muñoz, who would have to deal with the bill, said that it was expected that the document would arrive between Wednesday and yesterday, but still had no news about it.
“Politics continues to replace the economy and that will end up being a serious error (…) when we leave the conjunctural elements imposed by politics in these 11 months we will realize that the economy needs and needed priority attention” , Muñoz assured.
The legislator assures that although it is understandable that for the priority to address the situation at the border, the assembly members can also work on the bill.
Another of the unresolved issues has to do with the limit of the public debt that, according to the Comptroller’s Office, already exceeded the legal ceiling in 2016 and that in the official calculations it is already approaching 40% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Minister Viteri said that one of the options being considered is a period of transition to raise the debt ceiling to get into debt.
For now, Viteri is in Washington (United States) for the Spring Meetings of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank Group (WBG). According to the Ministry of Finance, it is expected to meet with senior multilateral officials and also with investors.
Meanwhile, the Prosecutor’s Office announced that on April 10, it opened a criminal investigation into the public debt against several public servants, including former president Rafael Correa.
“It’s also important”
For Larry Yumibanda, president of the College of Economists of Guayas, the government should not neglect the economic importance for the country.
For the economist, the measures announced by the Government must be implemented quickly, because that is what the economic growth projected for this year and 2019 depends on.
Another obstacle to overcome, says Yumibanda, has to do with the debt ceiling. The Government must include in the economic plan a part that includes the possibility to raise the debt ceiling so that more liquidity can be obtained.
The authorities should look for more debt, as long as they are of longer term and with lower interest rates to give investment to stagnant projects, says the head of the Economists’ Association.
The first axis is stability and fiscal balance, which aims to reduce the deficit and public debt, with greater efficiency in collection.
The second axis is the restructuring and optimization of the State. It is estimated to generate savings of at least $ 1,000 million.
The third axis is the balance of the external sector and sustainability of dollarization, improving the balance of payments, exporting more and controlling imports. (I)