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  • Workers take to the streets on October 13, 2020 to reject conversations between the government and the FMI.

    Workers take to the streets on October 13, 2020 to reject conversations between the government and the FMI. | Photo: Twitter/ @NicolasdelCano

Published 11 January 2021
Opinion

The government touted the so-called Expanded Service Agreement as a means of tackling the fiscal deficit and decreasing debt. The government seeks a loan of $1.7 billion, an amount massively rejected by unions during a wave of protests at the end of last year. 

Costa Rican National Association of Public and Private Employees (ANEP) negotiations hold on Monday between the government and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) that could lead to severe cuts in public spending and a considerable reduction of the financial help for public workers.

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"There is no need for them to make us deal with social stress from an 'agreement' with the IMF. It is shockingly obstinate for us to be forced to do so, counting on the public purse with an amount of US dollars four times higher than what they want to reach with 'negotiations' with the IMF," the ANEP remarked in a statement.

"It is immoral to attempt to violate, even more, the fragile labor stability and precarious salary of salaried workers in the public sector, imposing an authoritarian regime on them, violating their acquired rights and consolidated legal situations," the organization explained.

"7 billion available in the public sector, but Alvarado insists on imposing an "agreement" with the IMF."

The government touted the so-called Expanded Service Agreement as a means of tackling the fiscal deficit and decreasing debt. The government seeks a $1.7 billion loan, massively rejected by unions during a wave of protests at the end of last year. According to experts, social unrest has risen the most now.

Nonetheless, the ANEP points out that this agreement is unnecessary since there are $7 billion available in income from the public sector, according to the General Comptroller's office.

Meanwhile, the authorities insist that the agreement "would provide a seal of confidence to the country's macroeconomic and financial policies," the Central Bank Director Rodrigo Curbero justified.

However, with funding available from the decentralized sector of the Costa Rican State, the workers emphasized that such agreement with the FMI could lead to an eventual "delicate confrontation" with the international organization and also it represents "barely 25% of that gigantic figure of the surpluses reported by the Comptroller's office.

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