(English translation; original in Spanish)
The President of the National Assembly, Gabriela Rivadeneira, declared, in the “Contigo de Ley” program, which is broadcasted on the legislative TV channel, that Ecuador is obligated to pay the debt of 96 million dollars to Chevron to comply with the judgment rendered by an Arbitration Tribunal of The Hague, under penalty of severe risk.
On the question of whether, instead of paying Chevron, Ecuador can hand those 96 million dollars directly to the Chevron’s plaintiffs for an alleged environmental damage, Rivadeneira responded that “it is impossible.” “Since it is an international ruling, the State must comply with it. If we do not comply with the payment, we will be practically subjecting ourselves to international laws of which we are also a part, as a result of having signed agreements that impose laws in these types of conflicts. If we do not pay Chevron, they could easily begin to seize our assets abroad and make credit lines impossible: it is the power of the large multinationals before the needs of states. This is the international structure that we need to dismantle, but in the meantime, the payment—although unjust, although irrational and tremendously cynical—the State must respond in accordance with the international ruling, because otherwise the damage could be much greater for the country, abroad, now that we need greater cooperation among states and more credit lines in favor of our economy, as it could collapse and make these factors impossible for Ecuador on a general scale.”
A recent court ruling ratified the verdict against Ecuador, sentencing it to pay 96.3 million dollars to Chevron, which won a claims filed in 2006 for denial of justice and for delaying judicial proceedings in Ecuadorian courts that did not issue a ruling on seven commercial lawsuits submitted between 1991 and 1993 by Texaco, subsequently purchased by Chevron in 2001. The International Court of The Hague ruled in favor of Chevron.
Rivadeneira’s statements can be heard after minute 40.
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