A wave of nationwide protests has shaken Ecuador and investor confidence in the emerging mining jurisdiction.
As part of President Lenin Moreno’s US$4.2-billion financial deal with the International Monetary Fund to fix the oil-exporting nation’s strained finances, the Ecuadorian government announced on Oct. 2 a package of austerity measures, including an end to four-decade-old fuel subsidies.
Without the subsidies, which cost the state around US$1.3 billion annually, gasoline prices rose 24% to US$2.30 a gallon, while diesel prices more than doubled to US$2.27 a gallon.
The move did not go down well. What began as a protest by taxi drivers and truckers against the price increases escalated into a nationwide revolt drawing in farmers, students and Indigenous groups.
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