Why Does El Salvador Like To Imitate The United States?



We have heard the same rhetoric before, promises for change.

Was this the case for El Salvador after electing former president Francisco Flores?

That is what former President Francisco Flores promised his country in 2001 when El Salvador adopted the dollar as their national currency. He promised unparalleled economic prosperity and growth for all Salvadorans. That has not been the case at all.

Let us go back to 2001, former president Francisco Flores promised more foreign investment for El Salvador and as a result proceeded with dollarizing El Salvador’s currency. The domestic small business owners can now be assessed as being negatively impacted by this change of currency, and the large domestic business owners, while the large foreign business owners have benefited with this change.

Let us move forward a decade later; El Salvador elected its first leftist President in 2009.  When running for Presidential office, President Mauricio Funes compared himself to Barack Obama and continually repeated that change and hope was coming to El Salvador.  Can the FMLN deliver on the  promise of change by persuading the Salvadoran
National Assembly to eliminate using the dollar as the monetary system, however; this will signify a return to a new start, which will create an economic freeze during the transition period to its former currency, el colon. It is definitely possible to do this. El Salvador’s current government should assess a return to using its former national currency, the colon.  This change should be conducted to help stabilize the economy and help reduce the high crime wave occurring in El Salvador.

The dollarization of the Salvadoran economy has created more poverty, an increase to migration to the United States, and led to an increase in crime and violence in El Salvador.  Study after study has made strong correlation that poverty leads to more frustration and higher rates of violence.

In El Salvador, over 4,365 homicides occurred in 2009. The citizenry of El Salvador, poor and rich, continues to feel under siege due to the criminal activities that occur on a daily basis.  The gang issue continues to be out of control in El Salvador and this results in an increase drug use and violence.

El Salvador is not better off with the “dollarization” system.  It has actually created more poverty, disparities of wealth, leading to an increase in crime and murder.

President Mauricio Funes promised that change was coming.  We hope that President Funes will deliver on his promise by assessing and reinstating the use of the “colon” as the national currency of El Salvador.  The dollarization of the Salvadoran economy has not created economic prosperity.

The people of El Salvador elected a leftist President since they believed in his promises of change and hope.  Let’s hope that he can deliver by returning to the colon and taking a serious stand in decreasing the crime rates and making his people feel safe while they use the public transit system, while shopping at the local markets, or simply walking around their neighborhoods.

The dollarization of the Salvadoran economy has definitely hurt the small domestic business owners and street vendors. This problem should be rectified immediately by returning to the former national currency of El Salvador, el colon.

President Funes must deliver on his promise of hope and change. Returning to the colon would allow the small and large domestic businesses return to produce to the Salvadoran economy which will be a positive achievement for the country.  Bringing back the national businesses to the Salvadoran economy will contribute to independence from foreign investors.  It would create a reduction of crime and violence in El Salvador.

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