Ecuador Vice President Jorge Glas says that the political opposition has no basis for claiming that that the country’s debt has created an economic crisis. “They are trying to scare people and ignore Ecuador’s situation in relation to other countries in the region,” he says. “What some of them are saying borders on fraud.”
Speaking to a meeting of economics professors from Ecuadorian universities, Glas said that the country is well-situated to meet its obligations and that other countries in the region face much sterner tests. “We have the third lowest debt ratio in Latin American, only behind Chile and Peru,” he said. “Our debt to GDP (Gross Demestic Product) stands at 27%, compared to 17% for Chile and 22% for Peru,” he said.
“Our debt has been reduced by more than 40% in the past nine years,” he said.
“What is amusing,” he added, “is that some of our opposition points to the U.S. as an example of how we should conduct our financial affairs. The U.S. debt ratio is 112% and Canada is not far behind at 91%.
Citing World Bank statistics, Glas displayed a graphic of debt ratios for Latin American countries. Countries with the highest debt levels are Brazil, Venezuela, Mexico and Argentina, which stand at 71%, 62%, 51% and 48% respectively. Panama and Colombia have ratios of 44% and 37%.
According to the World Bank, Japan is the most indebted nation at 259% of GDP.