Ecuador Plans to Open Wallet As Oil Price Rises



Ecuador's President Rafael Correa proclaimed Thursday that the South American country will boost its investment plan this year as the price per barrel of crude oil rises and the government secures external financing to fund its fiscal deficit.

Ecuador's primary source of revenue, oil has recently climbed on the New York Mercantile Exchange to settle in the $60-$70 range.

Addressing a U.N. conference, the Ecuadorian president noted that an increase in the price of oil will enable the country to raise its investment plan from $2.8 billion to $4 billion. Moreover, Correa said the country will exit 2009 with a fiscal deficit of $2 billion, which will be financed through external funding, according to a report by Reuters.

Correa also threatened to expel international oil companies from Ecuador if they did not sign a new oil service contract.