QUITO, Jan 20 (Reuters) - Leftist Ecuadorean presidential
candidate Andres Arauz said in an interview on Wednesday that he
will not comply with the conditions of a financing package
negotiated with the International Monetary Fund if he is
Arauz, 35, an economist who is a close ally of former
President Rafael Correa, said he would continue making payments
to bondholders but added that the country's social spending
would take priority over debt servicing.
"The agreement with the IMF under the current conditions...
will not be complied with, because they undermine Ecuadorean
families and a program of economic growth in Ecuador," he said
in a telephone interview with Reuters.
President Lenin Moreno agreed last year to an IMF package
that required painful austerity measures, including cuts in
government spending, personnel reductions, and a hike in
Ecuador on Feb. 7 holds elections for a new president and
A poll conducted this month by public opinion group Market
showed Arauz as the front-runner, but that the vote would go to
If elected, Arauz would advocate borrowing from Ecuador's
own central bank if the country needed other sources of funding,
He said he would respect existing mining concessions in
Ecuador, a predominantly oil-producing country that has sought
to develop its gold, silver and copper mining industry. But, he
said, he would seek greater participation of local communities
and would conduct a review to determine if mining companies were
complying with environmental rules and investment plans.
He said he disagreed with the terms of a $3.5 billion
financing deal with U.S. development lender DFC because it was
predicated on project development through concessions to private
He said such projects should be managed directly by the
state. The DFC and IMF did not immediately respond to requests
(Reporting by Alexandra Valencia and Brian Ellsworth, Editing
by Rosalba O'Brien)