Wednesday, July 31st 2013 - 06:09 UTC

Ecuador’s Correa pondering whether to join Mercosur or the Pacific Alliance

President Rafael Correa said that the determining factor for Ecuador to join as full member of Mercosur or the Alliance of the Pacific is the ‘flexibility’ granted in certain admission conditions, taking into account the fact that Ecuador does not have a national currency.

CAN and Mercosur should converge to Unasur, suggested the Ecuadorean president

Regarding the Alliance of the Pacific, (Chile, Peru, Colombia and Mexico), and which Brazil and Argentina do not accept as an option for Mercosur, Correa said that they are ‘good friends of Ecuador’ and if they have ‘proposals that go beyond a free market’, and “if there is consideration for a country as Ecuador, which does not have a national currency, we can assess the possibility of joining the block”.

But ‘if it is only a free market, open economy and all that stuff, we will never join such a block” emphasized Correa.

The Pacific Alliance is expected to have a fifth member by the end of the year, Costa Rica, while Uruguay and Paraguay have been accepted as observers. Both countries have plans to join the alliance but are limited by their Mercosur commitments.

Likewise with Mercosur, said Correa to which Ecuador belongs with an observer statues, but to which it has requested incorporation as full members, as long as certain conditions are contemplated.

Ecuador since the financial and banking crisis of 2000 dropped the national currency Sucre, for the US dollar.

“Mercosur must be flexible in certain conditions since I repeat we do not have a national currency and this is not irrelevant”, underlined Correa who then recalled that many of the problems the European Union is undergoing is “because they do not have a national currency, thus they don’t have the tools to quickly overcome the ongoing crisis”.

But nevertheless in Mercosur there are many political coincidences, ‘countries with coinciding policies and with an overall scepticism regarding free trade”

Further on Correa said that regional integration must not be limited to mercantilism and free trade and suggested that the Andean Community of Nations, CAN and Mercosur should converge to the Union of South American Nations, Unasur.

“That it the right convergence for CAN and Mercosur to Unasur since besides trade, it includes integration in energy, finance, banking, common policies” said Correa.

‘It’s senseless for Latinamerican countries to compete among themselves: they need to harmonize social, labour, defence, energy, finance and taxing policies to better integrate”.

Correa said CAN is almost dead, seriously injured not only because Venezuela left the group (to join Mercosur) but two of its remaining four members have signed free trade agreements with the United States, “which is against CAN rules”.

Finally Correa said individualism was the essence of capitalism, but it destroys the collective and the collective without results destroys societies, and for this we must understand that the people have to be above capital, and in Ecuador and much of Latinamerica, “that is what is happening!”


12 comments Feed

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1 Elena (#) Jul 31st, 2013 - 07:55 am Report abuse
Really if he doesn´t want to join it would be better for him to just say so, but it´s interesting that he´s taking similar steps to that of Uruguay and Paraguay. And anyway the Aliance already has proyects with Ecuador in place.
2 Anglotino (#) Jul 31st, 2013 - 07:57 am Report abuse
“‘It’s senseless for Latinamerican countries to compete among themselves”

Actually that is exactly what they should do.

Competition leads to efficiencies and innovation. Mercosur doesn't create competition. It doesn't even create synergies. Each member actively tries to block and prevent any other member gaining an advantage.

Ecuador, comsiderig your lack of currency and location between Peru and Colombia, I'd give the Pacific Alliance a go. You can always leave and then try Mercosur.

A true supranational organisation is not what South America needs right now. It will eventually come but there is no advantages that can't be gotten more easily on a bilateral level or as part of something like the Pacific Alliance or Mercosur.
3 Stevie (#) Jul 31st, 2013 - 08:01 am Report abuse
“if it is only a free market, open economy and all that stuff, we will never join such a block” emphasized Correa.

Just in case you missed out on that line...
4 Elena (#) Jul 31st, 2013 - 08:02 am Report abuse
“Ecuador, comsiderig your lack of currency and location between Peru and Colombia, I'd give the Pacific Alliance a go. You can always leave and then try Mercosur.”

Agreed, and I think he´s trying to do just that or rather, try and get both memberships, if Uruguay and Paraguay get to do that maybe Ecuador could also. Greetings.
5 ManRod (#) Jul 31st, 2013 - 08:38 am Report abuse
Who says we want you let you in? Probably you would try to screw the PA from the inside. No thanks, go to your friends, the Thug-o-sur. They are indeologically nearer to you, Mr Correa.
6 Gordo1 (#) Jul 31st, 2013 - 09:33 am Report abuse
There was a meeting in Guayaquil yesterday(30/07/2013) of the leaders of the ALBA nations - shows how unimportant ALBA is as there has been no coverage of this event.

Is anybody interested?
7 bushpilot (#) Jul 31st, 2013 - 11:17 am Report abuse
@1 What involvement does the PA already have with Ecuador? What projects? That is interesting.
8 Elena (#) Jul 31st, 2013 - 12:23 pm Report abuse
@7 Energy and infraestructure mostly, it has to do with Ecuador, Colombia and Peru being members of CAN, so some of the proyects are still being followed on. In fact I think this may have to do with Ecuadors interest in being an observer of the Pacific Alliance in the first place.
9 bushpilot (#) Jul 31st, 2013 - 01:01 pm Report abuse
I don't see how having Ecuador as an Observer in the PA would be of any benefit to the Pacific Alliance.

As demonstrated in this article, Correa's economic and political thinking is very similar to that of the Mercosur countries.

Wouldn't Ecuador and Correa be continually critical of the PA economic strategy? Wouldn't Ecuador and Correa be continually recommending “Bolivarian improvements” to the PA?

It would be like oil and water. Why is Correa interested? He doesn't believe in capitalism and he doesn't believe in free trade?

Ecuador, with their economic thinking, would be dead weight, of no use, and serve as a distraction to the aims of the Pacific Alliance. The PA would be more focused on what they are after without Ecuador around. Ecuador, with its opposing economic thinking, would only hinder the PA, it would not help to advance the PA at all.

Does any one think the PA would grant even token Observer Status to a “socialist” ideologue like Correa?
10 Elena (#) Jul 31st, 2013 - 01:21 pm Report abuse
Well Ecuador is already an observer, but you are very right Correa and ALBA in general are very critical of the Alliance hence why I guess Ecuador just is interest in the Alliance because of the shared proyects with former members of CAN.
11 Conqueror (#) Jul 31st, 2013 - 02:02 pm Report abuse
Correa. Join mercosur. Might as well keep all the rotten eggs in one basket.
12 ChrisR (#) Jul 31st, 2013 - 02:34 pm Report abuse
As Stevie @3 rightly points out, commies can't stand competition and have to receive subsidies to make it “pay”.


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