Workers protest closure of state-owned enterprises in Ecuador due to the crisis

(Spanish CNN) – Dozens of workers from seven state-owned enterprises in Ecuador to be liquidated by the government due to the economic crisis worsened by the coronavirusThey have been protesting daily since Wednesday. Protests come Tuesday after president Lenin Moreno announces lower public spending $ 4,000 million and the liquidation of these companies for reporting heavy losses.

The workers of the national airline TAME, with 57 years of activity, gathered this Friday in front of the offices of Quito to reject the process of liquidation of the state company and to demand that they comply with the work obligations during the process. closing. According to President Moreno, TAME has generated losses of more than $ 400 million in the past 5 years.

Employees of the Ecuadorian Railways also went out to protest on the trains and with signs asking that a project that symbolizes “the unity of the country” cannot die. The Ecuadorian railways connect the mountains to the coast and are considered a historical heritage of the country.

The other companies that will be subject to the liquidation process are: Correos del Ecuador, Public Media, Strategic Ecuador, Seeding, Create and National Storage Unit. However, the Real Estate Procurement Service will be discontinued.

In public statements, the Minister of Tourism, Rosi Prado, indicated that a public-private alliance would be sought for the concession of the train service, since she assured that “these are heritage goods which cannot not be sold. ” The Minister of Transport, Gabriel Martínez, indicated that for the liquidation of TAME, an evaluation of the goods that can be sold will be carried out and if there are no buyers for the plane, they would make the offer in detached pieces. At the same time, the Minister of Telecommunications, Andrés Michelena, explained that the government will set up a “public concession plan” so that the private companies which operate the mail and parcel service can manage the postal service.

Seven measures from Ecuador to cut spending 5:34

The reduction in public spending announced by the President also includes a reduction of 8 to 6 hours of the working day in the executive function and one hour less for the education sector. The closure of five embassies and diplomatic offices, the return of 10 ambassadors and the reduction of 75 foreign service contracts have also been announced. In addition, the government has lifted the fuel subsidy and as of Wednesday, gasoline prices are set based on market prices.

For the President of Ecuador, these measures are aimed at “avoiding the collapse of the economy” and indicate that there have been $ 12,000 million in losses. “It is as if a family has lost half of what it needs to live,” said Moreno.

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