Government orders reduction in bank charges, Expat supported soup kitchen earns praise, Chile fruit imports criticized, Cost of being towed away

May 28, 2019 | 1 comment

Martes, 28/5/2019

Hola, Todos –
Actividades –

De la pagina cultural –

ArteCalle – This scenic arts festival had 5 performances at 5 locations today with the last a las 20:00 in the Calle del Artista with a party and tradition featuring the dance group Causanacunchi.

Otras cosas –

Titular – 3.600 cupos para 21.186 aspirantes a U. de Cuenca (3,600 places for 21,186 applicants to U. de Cuenca) – The admission process for applicants to the U. of Cuenca started ayer <yesterday – was that a word you were supposed to remember?> and will end el próximo viernes. Students will be evaluated on their knowledge of the different majors to avoid dropping out later. The example of music in the Art Department was given. There have been students with no experience or knowledge of any musical instrument, sheet music or notes who have tested well, were admitted and then dropped out.

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Bob Higgins at the soup kitchen. (photo by John Keeble)

Cheaper banking services – The costs of 23 banking services were reduced in Ecuador including internet transfers, getting or renewing bank cards, and paying for fuel with a card. For example, a bank transfer of which there are 44 million each year, will go from 45¢ to 36¢ and getting or renewing a debit card will go from $4.60 to $4.37. The government is trying to get people to switch from cash to cards which saves the government money and from having to physically import the cash. <I wonder how it gets here? On government planes, UPS, DHL? Slow boat from Baltimore?>

Towing cars – Owners who have not paid 3 parking tickets from SERT will have their cars towed by EMOV. They will also have to pay a $39.40 (10% of the SBU – basic salary) fee and $3.36 per day while the car is in the impound lot.

<And what follows is for you statistics junkies.> There were 30,518 tickets for parking in prohibited zones, 21,564 for exceeding the time on the parking card, not displaying the SERT parking card, 8,341 vehicles towed out of prohibited zones, 1,826 for altering the parking card, and 1.038 for parking in bus stops. <In case you don’t know about street parking, you can buy SERT parking cards for $1.00 and they have 4 slots you can fill in for half hour chunks of time. You fill in the time, date, how many 1/2 hour chunks you want, and put it on the dash. There’s also an electronic version.>

Used car buyers were warned to check if the car has tickets against it. You can check using the car’s license plate at EMOV’s web page ( You can also check with the AppSERT.

Posada cuenta con la “mano solidaria” de norteamericano (Inn has the “hand of solidarity” of North American) – Robert Higgins, a North American psychologist with an altruistic spirit, started a social project to feed the indigent and people going through hard times in Cuenca. “Bob” and his volunteers of 13 different nationalities feed 150 people from lunes a viernes at the posada San Francisco. Lunes is dedicated especially to Venezuelan families including 40 children under 2, to whom he gives milk. This costs about $2,000 a month. Another $500 goes to feed about 50 single mothers and indigent who walk the streets. 90% of his donations come from friends and foreigners who live in Cuenca.

There is another project –associated with the soup kitchen– to give clothing to those in need. If you would like to help, write to or call 096 967 5138.

Recycling project – The Municipalidad will start a project where EMAC can make money recycling. People will be able to take their plastic bottles to a center and get a payment which can be credited to their Movilízate card. City councilman Cristian Zamora said this would help develop a culture of recycling since the percentage of trash recycled in the canton is minimal, and having a monetary incentive to recycle should increase recycling.

Sterilizations – This viernes y sábado there will be a pet sterilization campaign in Sayausí. The campaign is driven by the Comisión de Gestión Ambiental (CGA – Environmental Management Commission) which provides “los insumos” (the supplies – your word for the day.) The campaign is for residents of Sayausí only. There was a previous campaign in Yanaturo-Sinincay where 164 pets were fixed.

Business page –

Competition from Chilean fruit – Antonio Torres, a Foreign Trade professor, said that imports of Chilean fruit are not good for Ecuador. Chile’s fruit exports increased 9.87% from the 2017-18 season to the 2018-19 season to a total 2,304,361 tons. In Latin America, 53.7% went to Colombia, 10.1% to Brazil, 9.1% Ecuador, 7.9% to Perú, and 5.7% to México. Professor Torres suggested adding value to Ecuadorian fruit, such as growing it organically, to increase its competitiveness.

And that’s all for today so Hasta ? –


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