Which Way Will Ecuador Go? (Opinion)

Posted on January 21, 2017 • Filed under: Ecuador, Politics

Ken Livinstone – THIS has been a big week for Ecuador. The country took on the presidency of the influential G77 and China group of developing countries and has marked 10 years of the Citizens’ Revolution, the name given to the change that has taken place in the country since President Rafael Correa took office on a wave of popular protest following decades of brutal neoliberalism.

Additionally, campaigning got into full swing ahead of elections on February 19 for a new president, the national assembly and a pioneering referendum on the scandal of tax havens.

Why is this important? Well, Ecuador’s path to a thriving, more equal society — in the face of determined right-wing opposition and US intervention — has a lot to teach us on the left.

The extent of Ecuador’s transformation is astounding. President Correa inherited a hugely unequal society with a super-rich elite dominating an economy heavily dependent on the export of oil and commodities to richer countries and reeling from a devastating banking crisis which led to the replacement of their sovereign currency by the dollar.

The crisis was so grave that between 1998 and 2003 close to 2 million people, out of a population of 12 million, left the country in search of a better life.

Huge political turbulence saw seven presidents in 10 years. Read Article

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