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Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Ecuador to Reduce Imports to Curb Crisis

Quito, Jan 18 (Prensa Latina) The Ecuadorian government will reduce imports and increase customs tariffs to reduce the entry of unnecessary goods and prevent commercial retaliations.

Since the Ecuadorian economy was dollarized, the country has imported huge amounts of consumer goods that are often unnecessary, and the current situation, characterized by a drop in oil prices, money remittances and private exports, has become a major problem, according to Minister for Economic Coordinator Diego Borja.

Therefore, due to a decrease in revenues, measures must be taken to overcome the financial debacle, Borja said in the border town of San Lorenzo, where he attended the first itinerant cabinet meeting of this government.

He favored an agreement with the importing sector and admitted that several areas are sensitive to this problem.

The minister ruled out a ban on imports, as President Rafael Correa said a few days ago, because that action may cause commercial retaliations against exports.

We will impose high customs tariffs that will contribute to reducing imports of unnecessary goods to reduce the trade deficit and prevent the vulnerability of public finance, he noted.

This measure is also aimed at defending the national industry, said the minister, who ruled out rumors about the non-dollarization of the Ecuadorian economy.

Borja added that customs tariffs on some 300 products will be increased, and the importing sector will be informed about that decision.

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