Ecuador quake tests infrastructure, political promises

Ecuador quake tests infrastructure, political promises

By Ellen Ratner   
Published
Damage in the aftermath of Ecuador's April 16 earthquake. European Union/ECHO/J. Lance
Damage in the aftermath of Ecuador's April 16 earthquake. European Union/ECHO/J. Lance

Will Ecuador's socialist leaders privatize industries to fund an expensive recovery?

UNITED NATIONS (Talk Media News) – Ten days after a major earthquake hit Ecuador, the country is still reeling, as it attempts to distribute food, get children back to school and evaluate the safety of thousands of damaged buildings.

According to U.N. assessments, more than 120,000 children have no access to schools, and the world body warns that aid supplies risk being mismanaged across a damaged and strained transport grid.

The Ecuadorian government says it has the situation under control, but the cost of rebuilding is likely to present a major challenge.

With the low price of oil dampening state revenues, President Rafael Correa is increasing taxes and issuing new bonds to try and raise several billion dollars.

A sign of how bad things are in the country: Correa, a socialist who’s long criticized privatization of key industries, is reportedly considering selling off state assets to fund the recovery.

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