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Ecuador’s New Sucre

There has been some confusion about the new Sucre in Ecuador.


Ecuador is such a beautiful place. Here is a shot of Mt. Cotacachi from our Cotacachi house and

ecuador mountains

Mt. Imbabura.

One really great thing about being in Ecuador is that one can kickback and stop thinking about politics.

See today’s message Rules of Wealth at Garyascott.com to see ways of seeing through deceit in the political system.

But politics does not have much impact on the day to day lives of expat.

However some seem to want to worry anyway so a  number of readers sent me a news article entitled “Venezuela and Ecuador Conduct First Transaction in SUCRE” worrying that a new currency had been introduced without their knowing.

Until 2000 Ecuador’s currency was the Sucre.  Then Ecuador dollarized and its currency became the US dollar and the dollar remains Ecuador’s currency.

There is NOT a new currency for Ecuador.

The article says: On Tuesday, July 6 the governments of Ecuador and Venezuela conducted the first transaction through the Unified System for Regional Compensation (SUCRE, Spanish acronym), a proposed regional currency for the member countries of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our Americas (ALBA).

“The SUCRE is an example of efficiency and the political willingness to define concrete projects,” said Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez.

The technology manager of the ALBA Bank, Edwin Duarte, explained that the transaction in the new currency took place through an “Online web system that provides accountant authorization in every country. Once the transaction is approved, the Central Bank of Ecuador receives the amount,” he added.

After the purchase from Caracas, the state-owned channel VTV broadcasted the confirmation of the transaction from Quito, Ecuador. An official from the BCE confirmed that the “the transaction was successfully accomplished (…) I confirm the reception of the money. The SUCREs were transferred.”

The SUCRE was approved in an agreement to establish it as the trade currency among Bolivia, Cuba, Ecuador, Honduras, Nicaragua and Venezuela.

Many readers also write to me worrying that Ecuador will leave the greenback and create its own currency not realizing that if Ecuador leaves the US dollar this will be good for expats.

I do not think that Ecuador will unhinge from the US dollar any time soon.  First, Correa  has stated the country will not.  Of course I am thinking beyond any politician’s word.

If there is to be a new sucre  then it would be sure to fall versus the greenback…. a political embarrassment that would also make goods from the US become more expensive.

Keep in mind Correa is an economist.  In 2005, he was the economic and finance minister under President Alfredo Palacio. To create a sucre and link it to the US dollar while the greenback is strong would make Ecuadorian exports uncompetitive.  If I can figure this out… he certainly has as well.

More importantly a new Ecuador currency could give Ecuador’s Congress more power and Correa less power.

Currently if Congress wants to implement any new program, it has the restraint of having to have the money to pay for it and Correa.  A new currency would allow Congress to print money which they currently cannot do.  And Correa’s government is already in trouble with Ecuador’s Congress.

This last Tuesday, members of Correa’s party in the legislature failed to pass a controversial monetary reform bill that would use Central Bank deposits to fund investment projects. In short he was trying to do the same thing as print money and Congress stopped him.

Correa’s party, could only muster 59 votes.  63 votes were required to pass the law. This is the second defeat for Correa’s party in the legislature in recent months. In May he could not secure enough votes to overhaul water usage.

The proposed monetary reform would have given more discretionary power to the Central Bank, reducing its limits on investments and allowing the Central Bank to invest directly in state-owned banks.  Many felt that this would provide liquidity to institutions that had questionable lending policies and high non-performing loan ratios in a non transparent way.

The indigenous protests against Correa’s water laws surely helped defeat them.  Now it is the financial structure opposing him. Correa’s party will probably try to get this monetary policy reform bill applied again soon, plus has other controversial bills that face opposition on hydrocarbon reform, communications and university education.   See more about his political battle with the indigenous at Ecuador Political Tension.

Political analysts say Ecuador might have returned to a long-standing political pattern, where the president is powerful in central government but politically weak in Congress.  This makes it less likely for Correa to do anything that will strengthen his congressional opposition.

However should I be wrong, and Ecuador reintroduces a new sucre as its currency the new Sucre would be good for gringos.


Join Bonnie and Nancy in Ecuador for a Special Women’s Event in Ecuador, September 20-24, 2010.

Quantum Living Secrets:  Age is just a Number

Ladies, here’s your chance to be in Ecuador. We all know that it is the women in our lives who give so fully of themselves to create our beautiful homes, raise our children, excel in their careers, and—well, you get my point.

You have learned to multi-task so efficiently, that you don’t always leave enough time for yourself.  So here is the opportunity you have been waiting for to slow down, relax, and rejuvenate your body, mind and spirit.  Summer’s over with all of its obligations, and now is the perfect time to pamper yourself with a bit of exotic luxury.

I have written a number of times about how Merri and I are at retirement age, but we haven’t slowed down, or even considered stopping working, because we love what we are doing.  People can’t believe sometimes how we can keep the pace we do at our ages.  I’ve also written about how living in Ecuador can reduce stress, which is why we are so pleased to let you know about this exciting event put together for you by Nancy Showalter and Bonnie Keough.  Here’s what they have to say:

Whether you are young, old or like most of us, somewhere in between, we have put together a unique experience for you.  We have designed an event that will help you stretch your boundaries, do some things totally out of the ordinary and create lasting memories.

We’ve talked to many ladies who are interested in traveling to Ecuador, but hesitant to go on their own.

Well, this is your time.

  • Imagine yourself relaxing and rejuvenating for 5 full days in the mystical mountains of beautiful Ecuador as you redefine your concept of aging and reinvent yourself.
  • We will share practical tips and techniques for a more holistic and healthy lifestyle, and help you tap into your creative power to more fully live your passion.
  • You will have the opportunity to experience a different culture and broaden your perspectives, and we know you will just love the sweet people of Ecuador.
  • And how about some pampering at the luxurious LaMirage spa?  We have included a full treatment for each delegate.  You will get to choose from their menu of options:   the Lavender treatment, Cleopatra’s milk bath, the Kofan Amazon herbal treatment, Ecuadorian hot stone energy treatment, or the Kissed by Angels treatment are just a few of the choices.  The gardens surrounding the spa, guarded by resident peacocks, are filled with hummingbirds visiting the thousands of colorful, tropical blossoms.  You will feel like you’ve been transported to a slice of paradise.  It’s a wonderful escape.

We will also do some sightseeing and we’ll travel to some local restaurants, off the tourist track, but well known to locals for their spectacular setting and delicious meals.

As a special treat, we will participate in a sacred ceremony with our local Shamana.  She will bless us with good health, good fortune and happiness.

And, of course, we’ll sneak in a little time for shopping, you can’t be this close to the Otavalo Market and not visit!

Oh, I almost forgot to mention the volcanic hot springs!  It’s one of our all-time favorite places on earth, high up on a tranquil mountain side with unbelievable views.


As you can see, we will be busy, but we wanted you to spend a few days with us and leave with wonderful memories, new insights, new friends and a renewed sense of adventure.


Nancy Showalter, who lives with her husband in Ecuador, will guide you through the journey of discovering 7 Secrets for Ageless Living and how you to apply them in your life.  Nancy is a great example of living the “age is just a number” lifestyle.  She will share her secrets with us for staying active, trim and happy.  She will show you easy ways to switch out unhealthy habits for beneficial ones.  Adding just a few healthy habits to your lifestyle can have a major impact.

Secret #1:  Invest in Yourself

There are two vital areas in life where you want to invest in yourself.  Learn what these are and why you do not want to ignore them.

Secret #2:  Use all of Your Resources

Discover keys to unlock the power that resides within you, and use that power for constructive change.

Secret #3:  Continue to Learn

Continuous learning is one of the greatest anti-aging secrets of all.  Learn why, and how to never stop.

Secret #4:  Do What Is Natural and Healthy

Health at all levels of your being is one of your greatest assets.  Learn healthier ways of living, unique ways to commune with nature, and specific practices that can improve your health.

Secret #5:  Simplify Your Life

There are cycles in life when it becomes important to let go—let go of things, of beliefs, of memories, or of desires.  Learn how to identify what—and when it is time—to let go, and ways to help you do it.

Secret #6:  Use the Tools at Your Disposal

Learn simple, but powerful tools to overcome your fears, release painful memories, better navigate the challenges of life, and be at peace with whatever life brings you.

Secret #7:  Be the Change

In order to change your condition in life, your relationships, or the world around you, you must first make the choice yourself to become the way you want others to be.  Discover the power of choice, and how to identify what holds you back from being who you desire to be.

Nancy and Carl Showalter reinvented their lives and moved to Ecuador over two years ago.  Having traveled to Ecuador several times in a previous job, Nancy loved the beautiful people and the special energy she felt in the Andes, and wanted to share the experience with Carl.  So in 2004, they registered for our International Business and Mystical Andes tour held in Quito that year.

Two years later, they attended our Super Learning Spanish course in July 2006.  During that course, they separately, but simultaneously, felt inspired to look for property to purchase in Cotacachi.  Through a series of events—and nothing short of magical—they found the property of their dreams.  By the end of that year, they were the proud owners of a charming little cottage on a lovely piece of  property just outside of town.


After some remodeling and several trips back and forth, the property was ready.  They sold just about everything they owned and in May 2008, they moved to Cotacachi with 8 suitcases filled with what was left of their personal belongings.  They now live in a beautiful setting between two  picturesque mountains that not only foster a healthy, stress-free lifestyle, but is perfect for the publishing business they have since started in Ecuador.

Over the last 30 years, Nancy has taught self-empowering principles and their practical application in the United States, Canada, Latin America, and Europe.  In 2003, she and her husband founded Quantum Living Institute through which they teach.  They recently returned from Europe where they presented a two-day seminar on personal transformation.  Nancy is the author of two mini-books, Quantum Living, Keys for Transformational Change and Ascent Back to God.

She has a Bachelors degree in the Liberal Arts with a concentration in Peace and Conflict Resolution.  As part of her studies in Peace and Conflict Resolution, she traveled to the Middle East to Israel, Gaza, and the Golan Heights, meeting and discoursing with Israelis and Palestinians on their perspectives and hopes and dreams for a peaceful future—an experience she describes as life-changing.  Nancy is a teacher of Hatha Yoga, and has studied many of the Eastern mystical paths.  She has TOEFL certification for teaching English as a foreign language, and during her first school year in Cotacachi, volunteered her services in one of the underprivileged preschools.  Nancy brings creativity and a unique integrated perspective in her presentations that participants find to be both practical and personally transforming.

She says:

Ecuador is the perfect environment for getting away from it all, relaxing, and at the same time reenergizing your life.  The people here and the relaxed lifestyle invite us to reassess how we live our everyday lives.  When we moved to Ecuador, some of our friends were fearful and thought it was too big of a change.  They asked, “What if you don’t like it?”  Our answer, “Then we’ll do something else.”

Unfortunately we sometimes forget that we have choices and that change can be, and usually is, healthy when we embrace it.  I look forward to sharing the principles of living that I have found to be self-empowering, and that have the potential to transform a stressful life into a healthy, fulfilled life, no matter where you live or what your life circumstances may be.


Bonnie Keough has made dozens of trips to Ecuador and has been conducting Ecuador export tours for several years. She has helped hundreds of Americans tour Ecuador. She brings extensive knowledge about Ecuadorian products and sales back in the USA.

The workshop will be held September 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 2010 (Monday through Friday).  We will provide transportation back to Quito on the evening of September 24, 2010.

The price is $599/single or $949/double.  We encourage you to bring sisters, moms, daughters, grandmothers, friends and have offered a generous discount for two.  We are not excluding men, but we are encouraging the ladies.

Included in the tour:  all transportation during the tour, including pickup in Quito on September 20 and return to Quito September 24, all admission charges, LaMirage Spa treatment, lectures, ceremonies, everything except accommodations and meals.

Not included:  accommodations, meals other than breakfast which is included at Land of the Sun Inn. Rooms at Land of the Sun Inn … $59 to $79 per night plus 22% service and tax.

Please contact Bonnie at bonnie@garyascott.com to enroll or if you have questions.