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President of Ecuador absent from Celac while visiting the US

Quito, March 1 (Prensa Latina) The president of Ecuador, Daniel Noboa, is one of the leaders absent today from the summit of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (Celac), while the president is visiting the United States.

Local media, such as the digital portal Primicias, noted that the Ecuadorian head of state, like other right-wing Latin American leaders, decided not to attend the meeting of the regional organization held this Friday in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.

The Communication Secretariat of the Presidency reported that Noboa, his chancellor, Gabriela Sommerfeld, and the Minister of Economy and Finance, Juan Carlos Vega, spoke this morning in New York with Wall Street investors.

The president expressed his intention to promote trade integration, employability, security and economic stability with the United States to consolidate financing and develop projects and infrastructure, the statement added.

The president insisted that thanks to the regulations sent to the Legislature on economic matters, his Government has already generated 50 thousand jobs for young people between 18 and 29 years old. However, official figures from the National Institute of Statistics and Census (INEC) refer to an increase in unemployment and informal work.

Regarding the security crisis, Noboa defended his declaration of internal armed conflict on January 9, which allowed the Armed Forces and the National Police to carry out joint operations to stop organized crime.

Likewise, the president justified his decision to increase the Value Added Tax (VAT) from 12 to 15 percent as of April 1, even though experts warn that this will imply an increase in prices and an impact on the middle classes and down mainly.

According to the president, the resources that reach the State coffers from the collection of this tax will serve to strengthen security, equip law enforcement forces and he assured that they will also be invested in the social area.

Noboa also met today with representatives of Citibank for Latin America and this weekend he will speak with US authorities, such as the New York mayor, Eric Adams, and some congressmen, as well as with Ecuadorian migrants.

Then, the Chief Executive will go to Canada, where he will hold meetings with leaders of companies and entities related to strategic sectors such as mining and energy.