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GOVERNMENT OF ECUADOR LAUNCHES CAMPAIGN TO ADDRESS INFLUX OF IMMIGRATION BY UNACCOMPANIED MINORS

Thursday, September 25th, 2014

September 25, 2014 – New York, NY – The Embassy of Ecuador in Washington, the Ecuadorian Consulate in New York and the Casa Ecuatoriana, launched today the campaign “Dile No a la Migración Riesgosa” (Say No to Dangerous Immigration) at the Queens Museum, with the presence of Ecuadorian authorities, local members of the Ecuadorian community, and social organizations that work on behalf of the vulnerable migrant population. The campaign aims to decrease the number of unaccompanied children making the dangerous journey to the United States at the hands of human smugglers by educating families about the life-threatening implications.

The campaign highlights safe alternatives that parents can take to reunite with their children without resorting to dangerous and illegal methods.

“As a mother, I understand the yearning to be close to your children and loved ones,” says Ambassador of Ecuador to the United States. “However, it’s not worth putting your child’s life in danger at the hands of human smugglers.”

The “Dile No a la Migración Riesgosa” is done in memory of Jocelyn Alvarez, the 12-year-old Ecuadorian girl who died on March 11th trying to join her parents in New York. The Government of Ecuador aims to reach the Ecuadorian community abroad and provide additional services for the migrant population.

This effort is carried out in partnership with government officials, artists, athletes and other Ecuadorian personalities, urging parents to not put their children’s lives at risk at the hands of human smugglers.

The videos of the campaign can be seen at the YouTube channel “Dile No a la Migración Riesgosa” on the following link:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwGtYgTFdjj3HIGmmZvFRnA


EL ECUADOR EMPRENDE CAMPAÑA “DILE NO A LA MIGRACION RIESGOSA”

Thursday, September 25th, 2014

La Embajada del Ecuador en Washington, el Consulado en Nueva York y la Casa Ecuatoriana, realizaron el lanzamiento de la Campaña “Dile No a la Migración Riesgosa”, este 25 de septiembre de 2014, a las 11h00, en el Museo de Queens, con la presencia de autoridades ecuatorianas y locales, miembros de la comunidad ecuatoriana y organizaciones sociales que trabajan a favor de la población migrante en situación de vulnerabilidad.

El objetivo de esta campaña es prevenir a los padres sobre los riesgos que enfrentan los menores no acompañados cuando intentan cruzar la frontera y visibilizar los casos que han enfrentado niños ecuatorianos, que buscan encontrar su hogar y reunificarse con sus padres, de quienes han permanecido separados por largos años. En los últimos meses se ha detectado un incremento de niños que cruzan la frontera de los Estados Unidos.

En este evento se recordó a Jocelyn, una niña ecuatoriana que falleció en un albergue de México luego de intentar cruzar la frontera, en marzo de 2014. La campaña está enmarcada dentro de la diplomacia ciudadana que ha emprendido el Gobierno nacional y que tiene como finalidad acercarse a la comunidad ecuatoriana en el exterior, brindarle mayores servicios, capacitarla sobre sus derechos laborales, proporcionarle información sobre atención a la salud y velar por las personas que enfrentan situaciones de vulnerabilidad.

Esta campaña ha sensibilizado a funcionarios, artistas, deportistas y otras personalidades ecuatorianas, que buscan hacer un llamado y prevenir a los padres respecto a las amenazas de la migración irregular para los niños, y será difundida con la colaboración de todos los Consulados ecuatorianos en los Estados Unidos y los medios de comunicación de este país.

En el programa en referencia se mostraron videos que recrean las situaciones que vivieron menores al cruzar la frontera, un video clip de la campaña, y se escucharon mensajes de prevención.

Los videos de la campaña están disponibles en el canal de YouTube “Dile No a la Migración Riesgosa” en el siguiente enlace:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwGtYgTFdjj3HIGmmZvFRnA


ECUADOR PRESENT IN FORUMS ON CLIMATE CHANGE AT THE CLIMATE SUMMIT OF THE UNITED NATIONS

Wednesday, September 24th, 2014

September 22, 2014—Ambassador of Ecuador to the United States, Nathalie Cely, along with Ecuador’s Minister of Environment, Lorena Tapia, participated in the Sustainable Development Network’s discussion group, a global initiative of the United Nations, at an event held at the Earth Institute of Columbia University in New York City.

World leaders, private sector representatives, and scientists also participated in the event to discuss the approaches and scientific answers in the long term to provide solutions to climate change.

The world has agreed not to exceed 2 degrees Celsius increase in the global temperature, since it would bring unprecedented harmful effects for the planet. To achieve this, world and business leaders committed to the call to implement national strategies and articulate a long-term international cooperation to mitigate the adverse effects of climate change. The discussion panel recognized the important role of governments and the private industry, which urgently need a higher degree of commitment to reduce carbon emission in their operations. Jeffrey Sachs, Director of the Earth Institute of Columbia University, made a strong call to the United States for it to join global efforts against climate change through deep carbon reduction of its economy, especially its energy and transport systems.

Additionally, Ambassador Nathalie Cely participated in the closing event of the summit of the United Nations, in which the book “Addressing Climate Change” by photographer Henry Dallal’s was presented. During this event, Ecuador was recognized as the Latin American country with major advances in the fight against climate change.

Ambassador Cely noted that the position of Ecuador on these matters is based on the Ecuadorian Constitution of 2008, in which the rights of nature are recognized. Additionally, she stressed that Ecuador has designed and begun to implement policies under the National Development Plan and the Change of the Production and Energy Matrixes, to promote renewable energy, energy efficiency, reduce deforestation and to help reduce emissions of greenhouse gases.

Today, the Government of Ecuador is building 8 hydroelectric plants that will be fully operational in 2017, with a capacity to produce 2827 MW. This represents an investment of more than 8.460 million USD, aimed for sustainable development and climate change mitigation.

The clean electricity to be generated will be used for other programs that contribute to the national policy to change the energy matrix. One example of this is the program that seeks to promote efficient cooking in the majority of Ecuadorians homes, where kitchens that now require LPG will be exchanged for induction stoves that will work with electricity generated by the new hydroelectric plants. With this replacement, for many Ecuadorian households the most important source of energy will cease to be of fossil origin. These, among other measures, will account for the country to reduce its emissions in the energy sector to 39% in contribution to mitigating climate change.

Ecuador’s policies on forestry are also generating results in terms of climate change. “Socio Bosque” Program promotes conservation of native forests in Ecuador. This program is to provide incentives to those owners of private and collective land who voluntarily commit themselves for a period of 20 years to conserve forests in their territories. Currently, progress is being made for the contribution of these policies to be recognized in terms of climate change mitigation, REDD +.

Furthermore, it is noteworthy that one of the goals in Ecuador is the restoration of 500.000 hectares of forest by 2017 that seeks the conservation and restoration of ecosystem services and sustainable management of forest resources. Through the National Forest Restoration Plan, which is based on a policy of governance of natural resources, in 2014 100.000 hectares have been reforested, a joint effort at public and private level.

Representatives of the Shuar Federation of Ecuador, Augustine Wachapá and Juan Carlos Jindiachi also participated in the event and shared through an emotional speech, an urgent call to collective action to address climate change. “Only when there is no water to drink, no air to breathe, we will realize the damage we have generated,” said the representatives of the Shuar Federation.


ECUADOR PRESENTE EN CONVERSATORIOS SOBRE CAMBIO CLIMATICO CON MOTIVO DE LA CUMBRE DE CLIMA DE LAS NACIONES UNIDAS

Wednesday, September 24th, 2014

La Embajadora del Ecuador en Estados Unidos, Nathalie Cely, participó el día lunes 22 de septiembre del 2014 junto con la Ministra del Ambiente, Lorena Tapia, en el conversatorio de la Red de Desarrollo Sostenible, iniciativa global de las Naciones Unidas, evento que se llevó a cabo en el Instituto de la Tierra de la Universidad de Columbia en Nueva York.

En el conversatorio participaron líderes mundiales, representantes del sector privado y científicos, quienes discutieron acerca de los enfoques y respuestas científicas que en el largo plazo podrán dar soluciones al cambio climático.

El mundo ha acordado no superar los 2 grados centígrados de incremento en la temperatura global, puesto que traería efectos peligrosos y sin precedentes para el planeta. Para lograrlo, se hizo un llamado a implementar estrategias nacionales a largo plazo y a articular la cooperación internacional entorno a este objetivo. Se reconoció también el importante rol de los gobiernos y de las grandes empresas, quienes necesitan comprometerse urgentemente con una profunda descarbonización de sus sistemas energéticos. En la misma línea, se hizo un llamado a descarbonizar industrias clave y reducir las emisiones de gases de efecto invernadero resultantes de la agricultura, la ganadería y el uso del suelo, como la deforestación. Jeffrey Sachs, Director del Instituto de la Tierra de la Universidad de Columbia, hizo un fuerte llamado a Estados Unidos para que se sume a los esfuerzos globales contra el cambio climático a través de la descarbonización profunda de su economía, en particular de su matriz energética y de sus sistemas de transporte.

Adicionalmente, la Embajadora Nathalie Cely participó en el evento de cierre de la cumbre de las Naciones Unidas, en el cual se presentó el libro “Abordando el Cambio Climático” del fotógrafo Henry Dallal. Durante este evento, Ecuador fue reconocido como el país Latinoamericano con mayores avances en la lucha contra el cambio climático.

Embajadora Cely señaló que la posición del Ecuador parte de la Constitución del 2008, en la cual se reconocen los derechos de la naturaleza. Adicionalmente resaltó que el Ecuador ha diseñado y comenzado a implementar políticas públicas como parte del Plan Nacional de Desarrollo en el marco del Cambio de la Matriz Productiva y Energética, mismas que promueven las energías renovables, la eficiencia energética, reducen la deforestación y a la vez ayudan a reducir emisiones de gases de efecto invernadero.

En la actualidad el Gobierno Nacional del Ecuador está construyendo ocho plantas hidroeléctricas que entrarán a operar hasta el 2017. Serán instalados en total 2827 Megavatios. Esto representa una inversión de más de 8 mil 460 millones de dólares, recursos propios del Ecuador destinados al desarrollo sostenible y a la mitigación del cambio climático.

La energía eléctrica limpia que se va a generar, se usará para hacer realidad otros programas que abonan a esta política nacional de cambio de la matriz energética. Un ejemplo de esto es el programa de cocción eficiente que busca reemplazar en la gran mayoría de los hogares ecuatorianos, a las cocinas que requieren de gas licuado de petróleo por cocinas de inducción, cocinas que funcionarán con la electricidad generada por las nuevas centrales hidroeléctricas y que de igual manera, promueve el uso de gas asociado en la separación. Con este reemplazo, para muchos hogares ecuatorianos la fuente de energía más importante dejará de ser de origen fósil y pasará a ser renovable. Estas, entre otras medidas, representarán para el país una reducción de emisiones en el sector energético equivalentes al 39% generando otro aporte a la mitigación del cambio climático.

Las políticas que diseña el Ecuador en el sector forestal también están generando resultados en términos de cambio climático. El Programa Socio Bosque fomenta la conservación de los bosques nativos del Ecuador. Este programa consiste en entregar incentivos a aquellos propietarios de tierras particulares y colectivas que voluntariamente se comprometen por un lapso de 20 años a conservar los bosques en sus territorios. En la actualidad se está avanzando para que se reconozca el aporte de estas políticas en términos de mitigación del cambio climático, REDD+.

Por otro lado, es importante destacar que una de las metas en el Ecuador es la Restauración Forestal de 500 mil hectáreas hasta el 2017 que busca la conservación y recuperación de los servicios ecosistémicos y el manejo sustentable de los recursos forestales. Por medio del Plan Nacional de Restauración Forestal, que es la base de una política de gobernanza del patrimonio natural, en el 2014 se han reforestado 100 mil hectáreas, un trabajo conjunto a nivel público y privado.

Representantes de la Federación Shuar del Ecuador, Agustín Wachapá y Juan Carlos Jindiachi, también participaron en el evento y compartieron a través de unas emotivas palabras, un llamado urgente a la acción colectiva para enfrentar el cambio climático “Solo cuando no haya agua que beber, ni aire que respirar, nos daremos cuenta del daño que hemos generado”.


10 THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT ECUADOR’S ELECTRONIC PAYMENT SYSTEM

Tuesday, September 16th, 2014

About the New Electronic Payment System (“Digital Money”)

The Government of Ecuador is in process of implementing an initiative proposed in January 2014 by the Ecuadorian Central Bank (BCE), for the use of a new electronic payment system, which is being commonly referred to as digital money.

The new electronic payment system will be implemented and managed by the BCE. The goal of the system is to increase the economic inclusion of the 40% of marginalized and currently underserved sectors of the population with limited access to financial services by allowing them to make payments electronically, thus facilitating their economic and social inclusion.

The implementation of the new electronic payment system comes along and is also regulated in a major financial reform that was debated in the National Assembly and incorporates revisions and input from different political parties and the private sector. The Law was published on September 12 in the National Registry.

These instruments aim to provide higher security for all deposits, improve the utilization of financial resources, and change antiquated financial practices into modern ones based on the prevalence of human capital, inclusion and equity; the code also repeals several scattered laws inconsistent with the Constitution and provides a legal framework to prevent major crisis in the financial sector, such as the banking crisis of 1999 that bankrupted millions of Ecuadorians to the benefit of a few powerful bankers.

10 Things to Know about Ecuador’s Electronic Payment System:

1. The electronic money does not replace the use of the U.S. Dollar. Its value is a representation of the same amount of dollars deposited at the BCE that can be transferred to other users through the use of electronic devices. As outlined in article 94 of Ecuador’s new monetary code, all financial and monetary transactions in Ecuador must be performed in U.S. dollars.

2. The electronic money is not a new or parallel currency, and it is not comparable to popular digital currencies such as “Bitcoin”. It is more accurately a payment system implemented by the BCE that is no different from an electronic wallet system used in countries around the world. No new money is being created. It is a new and cheaper method to store and transfer existing money (U.S. dollars).

3. The electronic payment system is regulated by Ecuador’s Monetary and Financial Organic Code, which requires digital money to be 100% backed by liquid assets, which means that for every digital dollar created there has to be a physical U.S. dollar at the BCE.

4. The money used in the new electronic payment system will be transferrable via ATMs, text messages, applications, websites, NFCs, Tablets, and IVRs. 40% of Ecuadorians lack banking services, while 90% of the population owns a cellphone or electronic device compatible with the digital money system.

5. The electronic money can be redeemed for its equivalent in dollars without any discount, except for the expenses related to carrying out the transaction—similar to using an ATM card, where the customer can deposit money, receive money, make payments or withdraw the money.

6. The electronic payment system will be available to the general public, private and public institutions (including private and public financial organizations) that have the capability to adopt and implement the electronic money system.

7. Payments made by the government or private organization using the electronic money system are backed by the equivalent amount in U.S dollars deposited at the BCE. In practice, users will have to deposit dollars with the BCE that they can then spend electronically.

8.The digital money ensures that all citizens, regardless of their economic and social status, have the ability to open a digital money account and have access to electronic financial services.

9. The digital money system will reduce poverty by reducing the cost of money transfers and providing a tool for unbanked people, especially in rural areas, to have greater access to the labor market, government programs, and the ability to trade further than they have been able in the past.

10. The new electronic money system will foster the creation of new economic networks among segments that currently struggle to expand their markets due to the lack of banking services.