CUENCA DIGESTCuenca could become an international center for software development as foreign companies locate offices here

Mar 28, 2012

Cuenca may quietly be establishing itself as an international center for civil and system engineers, according to Ramiro Crespo, editorial board chairman for Analytica Investments.

Crespo cites the story of Javier Ordóñez, a consultant for the risk management software company, Palisade Corp. of Ithica, New York. Ordóñez recently relocated from Ithica to his native Cuenca but continues performing duties for his old employer. Cuenca becomes the fifth international office for Palisade, joining London, Sydney, Rio de Janeiro and Tokyo.

Ordóñez notes that about half the systems engineers at the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank were from Brazil and Ecuador and that 80% of the Ecuadorians were from Cuenca. He cited the city´s universities, strong health care system and the availability of high quality software engineers, statisticians, for bringing him back to Cuenca.

Palisade´s Cuenca office has 14 full-time employees and provides remote and on-site training and consulting for such clients as NASA and Oxford University.

According to Crespo, a number of international companies have visited Cuenca and are considering opening offices here.

PROCESS FOR OBTAINING A BUSINESS LICENSE TO BE STREAM-LINED, CITY SAYS

Cuenca city officials say that the process of obtaining a business operating license will be easier after April 3.

According to Boris Landívar, Urban Control director, the new process means that the fire department, police, public health ministry, tourism office and environmental management office will share information to speed up the issuing of licenses. Details of the new system will be released soon, Landívar said.

According to city and Internal Revenue Service records, there are 90,000 licensed businesses in the Cuenca canton.

The city and provinice also announced new rules requiring bars and nightclubs to install security cameras and metal detectors.

ECUADOR TAX COLLECTIONS SHOW STRONG UPTREND

Ecuador's net tax collections rose 37% to $1.74 billion in the January and February period from $1.27 billion a year earlier, on an increase in value-added and income tax collections, says the nation's Internal Revenue Service.

Collections from the value-added tax in the two months reached $925 million, 15% higher than $804 million a year earlier, according to the SRI, as Ecuador's Internal Revenue Service is also known.

Income tax collection reached $460 million, up 18% from $391 million in the same period of last year. Other taxes totaled $360 million in January and February, the SRI said.

According to the SRI, in February, Ecuador's net tax collections rose 42% to $747 million from $525 million in the same month of 2011.

Credit: Wall Street Journal, http://online.wsj.com

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