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General Information

ECONOMY
Ecuador is heavily endowed with oil resources and has also very mineral-rich farmland. Due to the main products Ecuador exports, namely oil, bananas and shrimp, when these markets change, it heavily effects the lives of most of the citizens of the country. Ecuador joined the World Trade Organization in 1996, but apparently isn't doing very well with copmlying to some mandates, and don't have a close relations with the WTO.

After the devastating destruction of El Niño and the depressed oil market of 1997-98, Ecuador's economy went into a sort of free-fall in 1999. As the economic instability drove a 70% fall of the value of the sucre (Ecuador's former currency) throughout 1999, eventually drove the government to dollarize the currency in 2000, making it's official currency the US dollar. This monetary strategy stabilized the currency, but the economy hasn't necessarily gotten better. The new president, Gustavo Noboa has yet to complete negotiations for a long pending IMF accord. The CIA beleive that he will find it difficult to make all the necessary changes to make dollarization work in the long-run.

Imports and Exports of Ecuador

Major Industries

Major Agricultural Products

Imports
$4.1billion (1999)*

Exports
$2.8billion
(1999)*

Petroleum, food processing, textiles, metal work, paper products, wood products, chemicals, plastics, fishing and lumber. Bananas, coffee, cocoa, rice, potatoes, manioc (tapioca), plantains, sugarcane, cattle, sheep, pigs, beef, pork, dairy products, balsa wood, fish and shrimp. Machinery and equipment, raw materials, fuels and other consumer goods. Petroleum, bananas, shrimp, coffee, cocoa, cut flowers and fish.

Source -- CIA World Factbook
* in US Dollars

Import Partners

Percentage of Business

Export Partners

Percentage
of Business

US

39%

US

39%

Colombia

11%

Colombia

7%

Japan

9%

Italy

6%

Venezuela

5%

Perú

5%

México

3%

Chile

3%

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