Socialist Lenin Moreno sworn in as President of Ecuador

Lenin Moreno was sworn in as Ecuador’s president on Wednesday following a tight electoral race that the former vice president won on promises of maintaining the social programs of his leftist predecessor, Rafael Correa. The 64-year-old socialist won a runoff last month against right-wing banker Guillermo Lasso, bucking a shift to the right in South America as leftist governments struggle to maintain support. He has promised a more conciliatory style with adversaries and foreign companies, in contrast to Correa’s often combative manner. Moreno promised more support for agriculture and tourism, adding he would provide cheap credit and push to modernize infrastructure. Debt terms will be improved and the relationship between the state and multinationals transformed. His oil minister, Carlos Pérez, is a former Halliburton executive. Moreno, one of the world’s few paraplegic heads of state, thay will continue anti-poverty programs. But he has promised a more conciliatory style and more open dialogue with adversaries in contrast to Correa’s often combative manner.He became paraplegic after being shot in the back during a robbery in 1998.

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