Álvaro Noboa: It’s confirmed that there will be a second round
In an interview with journalists Blanca Chiquito and Christian Villacrés, on Radio CRE Satelital, this February 7, the PRIAN List 7 candidate for President of the Republic, Álvaro Noboa said that, according to his polls, he would enter into a second round together with incumbent candidate, Rafael Correa, and argued that this was due to the people accepting his Noboa Plan of economic reactivation, the generation of jobs, the increase to the Voucher, attention to marginal areas, and the support for agriculture.
“I want to make it very clear that for there to be a second round, and you are going to see, it’s important that the first, who will be me or (Rafael) Correa, has less than 40%, and all of my polls say that both I, as well as Correa, on this day, have less than 40%. That is to say, neither I nor Correa would win in the first round at this moment, and we will both be finalists.”
He repeated that the people believe in his plan to reduce taxes, which is going to attract national and foreign investment; a thousand large businesses that will generate two million jobs. That will reduce the number of those who receive the Voucher, and as there will be a Treasury with greater income, for the few – around 200,000 – who would continue receiving the Voucher, it could be raised to $100. There would also be funds in order to build public works in suburban neighborhoods, and to give them pavement, drinking water, sewer systems , and he didn’t discard the possibility of turning to international financing to attend to those works.
He also reported that while large companies were established, attracted to the country because of the reduction in income taxes, judicial security and other incentives, he pointed to tourism, micro-enterprises, and the recuperation of agriculture for generating employment and wealth. Taxes that increase costs on agricultural supplies would be eliminated; debts with the Development Bank would be resolved; and there would be a control of the commercialization of harvests, he stated.
The candidate finished by making a call for reflection. “Don’t waste the vote. There are only two finalists, Noboa and Correa. On February 17, the future of the nation will be decided. Think well before doing so, and I ask you to vote for Álvaro Noboa and for List 7. Vote all 7. Thank you very much.”
Blanca Chiquito: The listeners of Radio CRE hear you, go ahead. Good afternoon.
Álvaro Noboa: Good afternoon. First of all, I want to greet the people and to give thanks to God who is giving us this opportunity to talk with all of you, the radios who are networked in, and thanks to the radio listeners. Look, the first thing that I want to clarify is that there is a confusion that is important to leave very, very clearly explained. It’s that the Voucher that Álvaro Noboa is going to give, when he reaches the Presidency, is not $35 nor is it $50, but rather, $100. It’s very important that Ecuadorians know this. And for that I’m not going to have to raise any tax, because by attracting a thousand companies and to develop, between Ecuadorians and foreigners, more than two million job. Very few people will keep on receiving the Voucher, because the majority of them will be employed. So it will be a small group of handicapped people, or people who for A or B reason can’t find employment, those who will receive the Voucher of $100, and that will be a very small drain on the Treasury, much less than it is now. Because currently $100 million dollars a week go on the Voucher in light of the government having achieved the unemployment of a million people, given that when the Economist (Rafael Correa) got to government, there were a million people receiving the Voucher; now there are two million people.
The second thing that I want to leave very clear is that in order for there to be a second round, and you are going to see, it’s important that the first, that will either be me or (Rafael) Correa, have less than 40%, and all my polls say that I as well as Correa, on this very day, have less than 40%. That is to say that neither Correa nor I could win the first round at this moment and we, two, are finalists. Therefore, the vote should not be wasted. Ecuadorians who don’t want to waste the vote, definitely have to vote either for Noboa or for Correa, and even so, in that way, we won’t reach 40% neither Correa, nor I. Correa is at 35% and I am at 26%. I’ve already gone up, according to the last poll, to 28%, to 29%, and Correa went down to 33%. Correa is falling terribly over all the Sierra and in the majority of the Coast, where. Where he still has a bit of power is in Guayas, in District 3 and a little bit of force in certain places along the Coast, but just a little bit. Disappointment has come for him and it’s also very important that the Ecuadorian people know that I have a lot of proposals. One plan, called the Noboa Plan, is for employing two million Ecuadorians; a Voucher of $100; a plan for the young people so they can go to university free, choose their degree, without an entrance exam, and without restricted places. I have a plan to rehabilitate young criminals, gang members, and the best rehabilitation for them is to generate jobs and to put them into small rehabilitation centers until they are ready to b assimilated into society. I have an agricultural plan; a plan for tourism; a plan for healthcare; I have a plan for housing; a plan for automobiles. I only see him singing and dancing in the incumbent candidate’s platform; he doesn’t present any plan.
Blanca Chiquito: We are getting to know your plan of government and you are also greeted by Christian Villacrés. Go ahead, Christian.
Christian Villacrés: Counselor, good afternoon. Speaking exactly about the $100 Voucher. At the beginning of the year it went up to $75, the President said, socializing the profits and earnings of the bank.
Álvaro Noboa: $50 he raised it.
Christian Villacrés: I’m sorry, yes, yes, that’s right. My apologies. How are you planning to finance the increase in the Human Development Voucher?
Álvaro Noboa: I just explained it, but apparently I didn’t explain it well. Let’s see. Today there are two million people receiving the Voucher. Under my government, as I am going to generate two million jobs, very few people will be receiving the Voucher because they will be earning $300, $600, $900 or $1,00 dollars. So, there will only be 200,000 people who will be receiving the Voucher. Times 100, that’s $20,000,000 dollars a month, or $240,000,000 a year. Today, 1.2 billion dollars are spent every year on the Voucher. That is to say that the Treasury coffers, with my $100 Voucher, together with the plan for employment will have a savings of a billion dollars.
Blanca Chiquito: Listening friends of Radio CRE, we are with attorney Álvaro Noboa; we have some important issues. We have received constant calls, we have Twitter connections, and other concerns of our listening friends have reached us, and they are: in what way, how are you going to bring out a kind of planning in order to carry out the plan for paving the poor neighborhoods.
Álvaro Noboa: My Treasury coffers are going to be much more wealthy than the current Treasury coffers.
Blanca Chiquito: How are you going to do that?
Álvaro Noboa: I am going to explain all of that to you, because everything requires money. So, by my having a thousand businesses come here to Ecuador, paying 10% in income tax. A thousand times ten is ten thousand. Now, not even 40 businesses of the size that I want to bring to Ecuador, and forty times twenty-three (23% income tax that is currently paid) doesn’t even reach a thousand. So, my Treasury account is going to be ten times larger than the account of the current incumbent, and therefore I will have resources in order to resolve urgent needs. I spend half my time in poor neighborhoods campaigning, and the majority of the complaints that they make to me, and the commitment that they ask o me is: fix the streets, bring us canalized water, give us sidewalks, curbs, give us drainage systems, and canalized sewer systems. The rain on the roof means the water comes in and water falls on me while I am sleeping. There are times that I can’t get up without putting my feet into water because my house has flooded, etc, etc. As you and I are not at those levels of poverty, we don’t know the pain that that brings with it. The sociological impact is terrible and therefore we are going to assign, making any sacrifice, bringing about any international loan that there is for this from the World Bank, or whatever development bank. There are funds for these things, but they give them to governments that they know are going to fulfill it, because across the world those development banks are sensitive to the people not living in that state of misery. Because that is not poverty, it’s misery and it’s caused by the current government. Look, before there were one million people receiving the Voucher, which means one million unemployed, and now there are two million. And that reminds me of a film in which the people were sedated and they gave them a green pill to take every day, and in a factory, the green pill, what it did was to transform the bodies of the people who were dying into the proteins that made up the green pill. That’s a fantasy, that’s obviously a film. But here, first they take away their employment and then they make them dependent on the government via the Voucher. Then they threaten them, because that is what the people wherever I go have told me, that they threaten them, that if they don’t vote for (Rafael) Correa, they are going to take them off the list for the Voucher.
Christian Villacrés: Counselor, on various occasions you have spoken precisely about the topic of agriculture and speaking of that, you formulated a reactivation for the country’s farmers. How are you going to do that? Ecuadorians are listening.
Álvaro Noboa: Six years of losses in agriculture. That has two factors: incomes and outgoings. Income fell brutally every time that halfway through the harvest, they imported. It seems like an evil, to say, rice, or corn, or soya. So, they are halfway through the harvest and after having worked their fingers to the bone, that happens: the prices drop through the floor because of the government’s bad program of commercialization. And, on the other side of the coin is the cost. The costs have shot up, because supplies today have a just a few taxes: 5% on outgoing currencies; the forward payment on profits, a payment that is not refundable to the commercial business and therefore ends up being like a tax, like when conquered peoples gave taxes to Caesar; plus the VAT, plus import taxes. So those supplies cost twice or three times as much than on the international market and that means the farmer loses, loses, and loses more each time and many of them are giving out more money than they have at that moment in ownings. That is to say, they own the farm to the Development Bank. To make it easier for them, and there must be a program to eliminate the debt or to give them a payment plan with free years because, given the contrary, production will stop, or the state will end up with all the farms of the agricultural producers.
Blanca Chiquito: We are, listening friends of Radio CRE, retransmitting with some radios in Manabí and other provinces. We salute Café FM. It’s 5.43 pm. We are with attorney Álvaro Noboa. One of the important issues in your plan of government is the generation of employment. In what way will you, who has been a businessman and has generated many jobs, you probably have a specific plan and a plan of action for the generation of employment in case of reaching the Presidency?
Álvaro Noboa: Very well, there are various formulas for generating employment. Tourism: every floating citizen, tourist, who is in Ecuador has the obligation of being attended to by an Ecuadorian. That is more or less the proportion that occurs in France and other countries specializing in those areas of tourism. So, if we manage to get a floating population of a million tourists, there will be a million employees.
Micro-enterprises. I have publicly demonstrated to all of Ecuador examples of micro-enterprises. I have shown how a person can set up a restaurant with $1,200 or $1,500 dollars. How a person can stake out a crop of rice with $2,000. How a person can provide public transport, like motorized tricycles, which are at $1,000 and some dollars. Those work tools give to the person who is working them at least a basic salary, $300 and some dollars a month; over the year, it gives them $3,600, and in 10 years, $36,000 and those bikes, or that restaurant, or that bakery, or any of those sources of work can be paid off in three years at $50 a month. So there as well is open territory for creating hundreds of thousands of jobs. Besides that, by lowering income tax to 10%, so that investors come to Ecuador, the national ones, who should also have the same benefits, would immediately, feeling they are in a free country, put themselves to producing three shifts. That is going to generate employment. Besides that, the thousand businesses that I am going to invite and which are now going to Panama, those thousand businesses. They will generate, I calculate, around two thousand jobs. You are going to say, how two thousand? Of course. We, in Grupo Noboa, which is the biggest employer in the country, only in the area of agriculture have something like ten thousand families; in the industrial area, there are three thousand families that work. So for a company like Johnson & Johnson, or any of those businesses that earn $2.6 million dollars every quarter, or $10 billion dollars a year, if they see that Álvaro Noboa is in government – because they have told me so – they are going to come flying. Because they like to earn money and with the least amount of income taxes, and with a trained workforce that I am going to ask them to train so that that workforce will earn double or triple what they are earning now. So that they earn $600, or $1,000 and then those people will go to a free university and then earn $1,500, or $2,000, or $3,000 dollars. At that moment, everyone is happy: the employees, the businessmen because they will be earning money, the state will be receiving a significant amount of taxes.
Christian Villacrés: Counselor, but you say bring those thousand businesses. How are they to be brought? How to make them fall in love so that they come back. What are you going to promise them so that they come?
Álvaro Noboa: I’m only going to bring new ones, because no one has come here to Ecuador in the last six years.
Blanca Chiquito: But you say that there are a lot of companies that have left. You, as a lawyer, as a businessman, know very well how to incentivize those companies to return. How will you do it, and in what way? What will be your formula for creating those new spaces for work?
Álvaro Noboa: The way is for them to pay 10% in taxes on income, while they are paying 25% or 23% back home. That is a way of attracting them. Second, commit ourselves to the Chief of Staff not manipulating the Justice system in order to give them judicial guarantees, so that they don’t think that their businesses are going to be persecuted like the Grupo Noboa is persecuted by the IRS; or they’re not going to see special benefits as is the case with DOLE, Exportadora Bananera Noboa’s competitor, who they have pay $700,000 in taxes for the year 2005, whereas they want to charge Bananera Noboa $99 million. The people read those things, they speak with me, they speak with lawyers, and then say they don’t want to go to this country. So, that has to come to an end. The influence of the government over the court has to end. The risk of appropriation has to end. The class struggle that the Chief of State encourages has to end. If that happens, then a large number of companies are going to want to come to Ecuador. But meanwhile, here in Ecuador, we are also creating miracles. I tell you, in agriculture, in three months we have a corn harvest, so we give everything beneficial to farmers so that they plant things across the country, not only in the Coast, but also in the Sierra, in the East, and everywhere. We are going to work three shifts a day in factory, in tourism, we are developing micro-enterprises until those thousand companies come to set themselves up here, which will take a few years.
Blanca Chiquita: Unfortunately, Counselor, as you say, the negative part has to come to an end in this country. Well, this time it’s not negative, it’s an interview in which our listeners are learning something more about candidate Álvaro Noboa, PRIAN List 7 candidate for President. Good afternoon. And tell me, in 30 seconds, where are you going to spend carnival?
Álvaro Noboa: I am going to spend carnival campaigning.
Blanca Chiquito: Where?
Álvaro Noboa: All across Ecuador, I am going to be in Azuay, I am going to be in Pichincha, I am going to be all over.
Blanca Chiquito: Are you going to use your helicopter to be in so many provinces?
Álvaro Noboa: Well, as the government took possession of a plane that serviced the Grupo Noboa, we are now asking for service from another company. Sometimes I go by car, or use an airline to get to Quito, or a private plane, and if I have to go by bicycle, I’ll go by bike.
Blanca Chiquito: Thank you very much, Counselor.
Álvaro Noboa: My last words are: don’t waste the vote. There are only two finalists: Noboa and Correa. On February 17, the future of the nation will be resolved. Think well before doing it, and I ask you to vote for Álvaro Noboa and for List 7. Vote all 7. Thank you very much.
Christian Villacrés: Very well, Counselor, thank you very much.