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Ecuador: New Banana Law Being Discussed

28.12.2018

The report is ready for the first debate of the bill in the National Assembly that regulates the production and commercialization of bananas, plantains, baby bananas and other related Musaceas, which adjusts the procedures and requirements to improve the commercial exchange and business of the banana sector.

The project of 63 articles distributed in 10 titles was the initiative of Assemblyman Patricio Mendoza and establishes the creation of negotiating tables for the setting of minimum support prices and the minimum reference price; legislates on the caution, their mechanisms, scope and mode of payment; regulates the way in which the payments of the fruit should be made; and sanctions imposed on those who violate the rules.

The regulation establishes that the verification of the quality of the fruit will be made only once, on the producer's farm, and that this will be the responsibility of the buyer or exporter; therefore, it can not be subject to a new verification at the port of embarkation or consolidation yards. Once the fruit has been received to the satisfaction of the buyer or exporter, on the farm, there could not be, for any reason, claims for poor quality of the product received.

In addition, it is determined that the expenses incurred in the evaluation of the quality of the fruit, and in the stowage, will be assumed compulsory and in its entirety by the buyers or exporters, because according to the now ex-legislator Patricio Mendoza this provision will greatly help small producers because more expenses were incurred when they assumed the evaluation process of the fruit produced on their farm.

The proposed law, which will become known to the plenary, prohibits the planting of new hectares of banana, unless in the case of national interest duly substantiated by the Presidency of the Republic and approved by the National Assembly when planting of new hectares will be authorized.

Plantains, baby bananas, organic bananas and other related musáceas are excluded from this prohibition.

Those who break this provision will pay a fine equal to 50 unified basic salaries per hectare planted; and the fruit produced in this new area will not be able to be exported but used for domestic consumption.

The draft Law implements a negotiation table for banana, plantain, orito and other musaceas. The first consisting of thirteen people, including the Minister of Agriculture and Livestock; and the second table, of 17 members.

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