When he first requested the visit, Cuenca Mayor Marcelo Cabrera believed recommendations by a team of UNESCO experts might result in a rerouting of Cuenca’s new light rail system. Instead, the report received from the team two weeks ago will have almost no impact on the tram but is forcing a... [More]

President Rafael Correa says that a proposal to include housewives and househusbands in the country’s social security program is simply a reflection of a changing world. “What we are doing is recognizing the legitimacy of work that is done in the home,” he said last week at ra... [More]

Ecuador’s social security health care system has revised its procedures to lower costs and eliminate what it says have been abuses of its services. The major change, according to social security system director (IESS) Hugo Villacrés is the reduction in referrals to private health c... [More]

By Andres Schipani Of the generation of radical Latin American leaders that have won office in the last decade, Ecuador’s Rafael Correa – perhaps best known internationally for sheltering WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange at his country’s London embassy – is among those wi... [More]

By Michael Paulson These are heady days for Roman Catholics in Latin America. For the first time, one of their own is serving as pope, providing a visible reminder of the importance the region plays in the global church. But after a century in which nearly all Latin Americans identified as C... [More]

The risk that West Africa’s Ebola outbreak will spread and disrupt cocoa supplies may boost demand for beans from Ecuador and Colombia, according to industry groups in the Andean nations. “There’ll be a chance to promote our cocoa in Europe and elsewhere amid this very unfort... [More]

Ecuador’s Minister of Industry Ramiro Gonzalez says that the quota for the number of cell phones imported into the country will be increased. “There will be a substantial increase in importations,” Gonzalez said earlier this week. “The demand continues to grow and... [More]

Ecuador banks are scrambling to establish rules for U.S. citizen account holders to comply with new IRS reporting requirements. The new rules will affect existing accounts as well as new accounts belonging to U.S. citizens. According to spokespersons at Banco Pinchincha and Banco Internacional,... [More]

Several hundred protesters of proposed changes to the country’s labor laws marched up Calle Simon Bolivar Wednesday afternoon to join a rally in Parque Calderon. The march also attracted supporters of several other causes, including the ones opposed Cuenca’s light rail system and the a... [More]

By Eloise Horsfield Four British expats saw their Spanish retirement dreams turn to dust after their homes were flattened. The demolitions, which began on Tuesday in the rural village of Cantoria, bring the total of British-owned homes destroyed in the province of Almeria, Andalusia, to five. ... [More]

City officials have reduced the construction cost estimate of a proposed freeway by-pass from more than $700 million to $540 million. The adjustment comes in the wake of comments by President Rafael Correa who said, during a recent visit to Cuenca, that the project would be the most expensive r... [More]

The transport ship San Cristobal, carrying supplies to the Galapagos Islands, ran aground Monday morning southwest of Santa Elena and appeared to be severely damaged. It is the second of four ships that carry food, cars and other supplies to the islands that has been lost in 2014. The Ecuadoria... [More]

Ecuador could become the first country in Latin America without a prison overcrowding problem. The reason why is a sprawling new prison complex on the outskirts of Cuenca that can accommodate almost 2,800 prisoners. The prison, Centro de Rehabilitación Social, (CRS), began receiving inma... [More]

By Sam Jones Latin America’s efforts to manage its fresh water supplies are being frustrated by poor infrastructure, a lack of sewerage systems and inconsistent regulation, according to the head of one of the world’s largest beverage and brewing companies. Lippert says that bever... [More]

Retired physician Alejandro Martinez stood outside his house on Av. Loja two weeks ago, watching police work a roadblock checking for drunk drivers. According to Martinez, one of those arrested, a 20-something man driving a late model BMW, yelled at police officers. “Do you know who I am?... [More]

Only months after new city taxi fares were established, officials are considering raising municipal bus fares. The current fare of 25 cents was established 11 years ago and bus companies say it allows little margin for maintenance, purchase of new buses and shareholder profits. Based on the inf... [More]

It began as a protest by railway workers in Durán, just east of Guayaquil, in mid-October, 1922.  Their demand: an eight-hour work day, the right to organize labor unions, overtime pay, compensation for those injured on the job, and the establishment of workplace safety standards. O... [More]

Beginning this month, Ecuador’s supermarkets and other large retailers face new rules governing how they work with their supplies, even which suppliers they do business with. The country’s Superintendency of Market Control (SCPM) has delivered a Manual of Good Practices to large ret... [More]

One of the world’s largest orchid growers says Ecuador needs to do a better job promoting the industry and a Japanese orchid expert agrees. “All we lack is the government support to make Ecuador the top destination for orchids,” says José “Pepe” Portilla, ma... [More]

Although a report by a UNESCO team assessing Cuenca’s historic district does not recommend major changes to the city's light rail system -- officially, Tranvía de los Cuatros Rios-- it has plenty to say about how the city should manage traffic in the historic district. The stud... [More]

By Janet Novack There’s good news and bad news for the world's baby boomers. The good news is that despite concerns about meager retirement savings, baby boomers aren’t going to have to work into old age. The catch is, they’ll have to pull off that trick by redefining w... [More]

Cuenca’s fourth annual Festival de Cine La Orquídea kicks off tomorrow morning at 11 with opening ceremonies at the Mall del Rio convention center. Guest of honor is award-winning Spanish director David Trueba and the Spanish actresses Carmen Maura, Victoria Abril and Ariadna Gil. ... [More]

When happiness is studied, Latin America always manages to make it to the forefront. Last year, a survey by the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network, titled the 2013 World Happiness Report, found that Latin America made some major improvements in the department of happiness and... [More]

Monday's delivery of a report that may contain recommendations for the construction of Cuenca’s light rail system appeared to draw only limited interest from city officials. The 66-page report from a UNESCO team of experts was once considered a tool that would allow new Cuenca Mayor M... [More]

Although it is not known how many expats 65 and older take advantage of all senior price breaks, but municipal bus companies say more than 300 have purchased bus tickets at the reduced 12 cents per ride rate, and the cantonal tax authority says that 625 take deductions on a variety of taxes. Al... [More]