From Feb. 27 to Mar. 1, nearly 10 thousand government employees were fired according to local media reports.
Ecuador: IMF Loan Yet to Be Granted, Austerity Measures a Condition for Agreement
This came after the Ecuadorean President Lenin Moreno signed a deal of US$4.2 billion with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Feb. 20.
On Feb. 21, through a press release, the IMF clarified that its technical staff in Ecuador and Ecuadorean officials have reached an agreement on the policy measures that the government of Ecuador must implement to subsequently apply for the US$4.2 billion loans, which the IMF would then process in the context of what it calls Extended Fund Facility (EFF).
An EFF is "to assist member countries in overcoming balance of payments problems that stem from structural problems,” highlights IMF’s debt policy.
In order to receive this amount, the government has to apply austerity measures which means a cut in social spending, job cuts, cut in welfare schemes.
Hence, since Feb. 27, contractual public employees at the national level are being dismissed from their jobs.
According to lawmaker Pabel Muñoz, the government gave the workers a “low blow. Behind every person who loses the job, there is a family that affects their daily sustenance.”
Cesor Bedon, a lawyer and adviser to assemblywoman for the Cotopaxi province said that the Ministry of Labor Relations has been asked to report on how many people were dismissed in total.
According to Bedon, this measure was taken by the government after the crisis generated by the elimination of the US$207 million from the State budget. In the Ecuadorian Institute of Social Security (IESS) 500 employees were fired.
Minister of Labor, Andres Madero was in charge of reducing the number of public officials by 10 percent which was supposed to start from March.
A similar deal with IMF was signed by the Argentine government resulting in widespread protest against inflation and austerity measures that broke the institutions depended on government spending.