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  • El Salvador buys back its debt while the British pound plummets to a record low

    El Salvador buys back its debt while the British pound plummets to a record low

    Sterling hit its lowest level against the dollar on Monday on fears of a deep recession in Britain after new Finance Minister Kwasi Kwarteng unveiled a controversial tax cut plan.

    The pound fell as low as $1,035 in Asian morning trading, according to Bloomberg data, with some commentators warning it could reach parity with the US currency.

    Investors began selling pounds on Friday after Kwarteng unveiled plans to cut taxes to revive Britain’s ailing economy.

    Selling continued on Monday after he said he intended to make further cuts, despite the uproar it caused in London markets, where the FTSE 100 fell nearly 2%.

    In El Salvador, its debt bonds were priced higher after the successful repurchase, which prompted the launch of a second offer in eight weeks to acquire all of the remaining debt corresponding to the 2023 and 2025 issues, as announced by the president. Nayib Bukele

    A second debt repurchase operation, announced by the President of the Republic, Nayib Bukele, after the successful early purchase of debt executed by the Salvadoran government, where he acquired part of the bonds maturing in 2023 and 2025, for a total of $565 million.

    «The operation was so successful that we have decided to launch another offer for the rest of the 2023 and 2025 bonds. Always publicly, transparently, and at market prices at the time of the next repurchase, which will take place in eight weeks,» President Bukele posted on Twitter.

    President Bukele highlighted that the favorable reception by investors to the early purchase offer of securities with maturities in 2023 and 2025 means savings of $275 million, which makes it attractive to launch a second operation to reacquire the totality of the two closest debt issues.

  • The Salvadoran government seeks synergies in the technology sector

    The Salvadoran government seeks synergies in the technology sector

    Since the administration of President Nayib Bukele began, the Ministry of Economy (Minec) has developed projects and managed alliances to promote investments in El Salvador, especially in the technology sector.

    The latest business meetings held by the head of Minec, María Luisa Hayem, have had a digital economy approach. For example, last week, the officials met in Austria with representatives of the startup and innovation center called INNCUBATOR.

    «El Salvador has as one of its priorities to attract investment to the country as a fundamental pillar to boost economic growth,» said Hayem on that occasion.

    In addition, the minister discussed last Thursday the digital transformation in the country with the director of government relations and public policy for emerging markets at Google, Selim Eddé.

    «We talked about areas of collaboration to contribute to prosperity in El Salvador through the use of technology,» he said.

    On the other hand, Hayem participated in the Spotlight on Latin America Briefing forum, organized by the Financial Times and Millicom Tigo, where he spoke about how the public and private sectors can work together to close the digital divide, and thus ensure that all communities can benefit from the opportunities of a global digital economy.

    This latest event aimed to discuss how private and state sector partnerships can boost connectivity to support growth and accelerate sustainable development.

    «At this event, I spoke about the Salvadoran economy’s strong performance and the progress we’ve made to make our country the best business climate in the region,» she said on Twitter. 

  • ISSS innovates with minimally invasive cardiac intervention

    ISSS innovates with minimally invasive cardiac intervention

    For the first time in the country, the Salvadoran Social Security Institute (ISSS) developed the percutaneous closure of an atrial septal defect, a congenital defect that affected a beneficiary. The intervention was carried out by the multidisciplinary team of the Endovascular Therapy Unit of the Surgical Medical Hospital and Mexican doctors.

    This procedure was part of the development of the XXXII Central American and Caribbean Congress of Cardiology and the XLIII National Congress of Cardiology, which brought together more than 400 specialists, including ISSS doctors, in which the Heart Team of the Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute, part of Baptist Health South Florida, led by Salvadoran doctor Ramón Quesada, medical director, shared different innovations developed in cardiology.

    The surgery was broadcast live from the MQ Hospital to the hotel in the capital, where one of the days of the congress took place, and was supervised by the general director of the ISSS, Mónica Ayala.

    For the execution of procedures of this type, the institution has acquired 40 closure devices for congenital heart disease, as well as 48 valves for TAVI aortic valve implantation, which translates into $1.4 million in the purchase of supplies planned for the years 2022–2023.

    «We are avoiding open heart surgery, which would have a recovery of at least 10 for the patient, and now we are going to do it endovascular,» said Dr. Ayala.

    The intervention was led by interventional cardiologists from the Endovascular Therapy Unit of the ISSS Surgical Medical Hospital. Dr. Roberto Mijangos, cardiologist of Mexican nationality and specialist in congenital interventionism, and Dr. Adrián Sánchez, hemodynamist of the Regional Hospital of Tijuana, also accompanied

    Dr. Mijangos explained what the procedure consisted of and said that: «We closed a congenital defect. The patient was born with that defect between both atria. We closed the defect with a device that has nickel and titanium. This procedure has the advantage that it is done through the leg in the femoral vein. We have access to the heart to be able to find the defect, and with the help of transesophageal ultrasound, we locate the defect, measure it, and see the device that best suits it. This is what we did with this patient, closing this defect with an 18-millimeter device.»

  • Bloom Hospital receives 27 electric beds for intensive care

    Bloom Hospital receives 27 electric beds for intensive care

    The Benjamin Bloom National Children’s Hospital received this afternoon from the Ministry of Health electric beds for intensive care, which will be of benefit to patients receiving care at this specialized health center.

    «These 27 new electric beds add to the strength that we have maintained in the hospital network, which allows us to provide those tools that health personnel need. Six of the teams will be for the internal medicine area, eight in infectious diseases, four in the Surgical Intensive Care Unit, and nine in the Pediatric Unit,» said the Minister of Health, Francisco Alabi, during the delivery.

    According to the Minsal, this is the first time that this health center will have this equipment, which allows patients to be placed in different positions.

    «These beds have a robust structure, are easy to clean and resistant to the accumulation of bacteria. In addition, they have an anti-decubitus mattress made of high-density foam and a waterproof coating,» added Alabi.

  • El Salvador will launch a second debt buyback offer

    El Salvador will launch a second debt buyback offer

    A second debt repurchase operation was announced by the President of the Republic, Nayib Bukele, after the successful early purchase of debt executed by the Salvadoran government, where he acquired part of the bonds maturing in 2023 and 2025, for a total of $565 million.

    «The operation was so successful that we have decided to launch another offer for the rest of the 2023 and 2025 bonds. Always publicly, transparently and at market prices at the time of the next repurchase, which will take place in eight weeks,» the President posted on Twitter.

    President Bukele highlighted on Wednesday that the favorable reception by investors to the early purchase offer of securities with maturities in 2023 and 2025, means savings of $275 million, which makes it attractive to launch a second operation to reacquire the totality of the two closest debt issues.

    According to Bloomberg magazine, the success of the repurchase also allowed a rebound in the price of Salvadoran bonds. For example, the issue maturing in 2050 was quoted almost $0.05 higher, that is, $0.35 per dollar, which represents the lowest price ever recorded since the end of July this year.

    For his part, the Minister of Finance, Alejandro Zelaya, confirmed that El Salvador saved more than $275 million by carrying out this historic operation. «Many thanks to our investors and to the entire technical team involved in the operation. More news about our liability management strategy very soon »he expressed.

    He added that the payment of the $565.6 million in bonds, which the Republic repurchased, has already been deposited with the bondholders.

    In tune with this vision, the vice president of Exor Latin America, César Addario, said: «The clear messages of the transaction are that the government is interested in prepaying the bonds and prioritizing the external debt and, on the other hand, that it has security of the ability to pay the bonds maturing in January 2023.

    According to Addario, the advance purchase maneuver allows El Salvador to demonstrate its ability to pay in international markets.

    For his part, the president of the BCR, Douglas Rodríguez, also considers that with these actions the government demonstrates its commitment to paying the debt.

    «This government does not delegate or relegate, but rather fulfills the commitments made as a country, and it is important that we comply before the established deadlines,» he said.

    He added that, with the savings of $275 million, the government will invest more in security, in health, in education, in work, in projects, and always for the benefit of the Salvadoran people».

  • The Canadian airline, Air Transat, explores the return of its operations in El Salvador

    The Canadian airline, Air Transat, explores the return of its operations in El Salvador

    El Salvador is becoming an attractive destination for landing new investments. The commitment to security, anti-inflation economic measures, and support for local and international projects has been key to the establishment of new investors.

    In this scenario, in recent months, several airlines have announced the start of operations in El Salvador, while others are exploring their arrival in the country, such is the case of the Canadian airline Air Transat, which seeks to return to the runways of El Salvador International Airport. El Salvador, San Óscar Arnulfo Romero y Galdámez.

    It should be noted that Air Transat, Transat A.T. Inc. is an airline with a hub in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, and operates scheduled and charter flights to ninety destinations in 25 countries. During the summer season, its main destinations are Europe, and in the winter season, the Caribbean, Mexico, the United States, and South America.

    The announcement of the return of the Canadian airline was made by the presidential commissioner for Strategic Projects, Cristian Flores, who stated that after participating in the forum of the Canadian Council for the Americas last Monday, the first step for the return of operations was taken.

    «El Salvador continues to attract more companies from the aeronautical sector. Flores assured that «we will work together to expand the air offer in El Salvador and Canada.»

    According to Flores, the three phases that must be carried out to operate in the country are: the first, to specify the necessary procedures to restart operations in the country; the second, to extend their services for a period of time per year greater than what they did previously; and the third, to establish itself as a regular and low-cost airline with service between Canada, El Salvador, and other destinations throughout the year.

    The official stressed that Air Transat would be the first airline to bring to the country one of the new, state-of-the-art A321neo Max aircraft.

    In 2016, El Salvador received the first flight of the Canadian airline that operated chartered trips during a certain period of the year, coinciding with the winter season in Canada. The flights were directly linked to passengers visiting a beach resort.

    On the other hand, Commissioner Flores indicated that after the experience achieved with the Dominican airline Arajet, which in less than four months completed its procedures, obtained permits, and began operations on September 17, Air Transat is interested not only in finalizing its return plans for operations in El Salvador, but also in connecting the country to the rest of Central America.

    «We are working inter-institutionally to finalize this new investment in the shortest possible time. The trust generated by the government allows more companies from all areas, such as the aeronautical sector, to be interested in arriving and establishing themselves in El Salvador as a destination and hub to operate in the region,» Flores concluded.

    Until August of this year, the Ministry of Tourism (Mitur) indicated that the number of American and Canadian tourists visiting the country had increased by up to 75%. In addition, 13 commercial airlines operate in the country.

  • The First Lady has been selected as part of the Movement for the Promotion of Nutrition by the UN

    The First Lady has been selected as part of the Movement for the Promotion of Nutrition by the UN

    The first lady of the republic, Gabriela de Bukele, was named a new member of the Leading Group of the Movement for the Promotion of Nutrition (Scaling Up Nutrition [SUN]), which is promoted by the United Nations Organization and consists of a global collaborative platform aimed at reducing all forms of malnutrition in children, with an emphasis on the first 1,000 days of life.

    It is currently made up of 65 countries, of which seven are from Latin America, to make the vision of a world without hunger or malnutrition a reality. The first lady received this recognition thanks to her professional experience, her work, and her strong commitment to the well-being and comprehensive development of children and adolescents.

    The first meeting of the 2022-2024 board with the new global leaders took place yesterday in New York. Among the high-level officials and businessmen, such as the first lady, Gabriela de Bukele, are Catherine M. Russell, executive director of Unicef and president of the board, from the United States; Ingir Ashing, CEO of Save the Children International, from Sweden; and Josefa Leonel Correia, Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development of the African Union Commission, from Angola, among others.

    «We are also working on the subject of nutrition in schools to bring the focus closer to families, so that children can take their learning on this subject home,» the first lady explained. In addition, Gabriela de Bukele explained that before in El Salvador, nutrition was not prioritized. However, in the government of President Bukele, a clear route is being developed to promote nutrition during pregnancy and lactation. «We have the mothers and we can work on their nutrition during pregnancy so they can feed their babies. This leads us to another very important consideration: learning how to eat and learning what we should eat», explained Gabriela de Bukele.

    It should be noted that all the members of the Leading Group have a fundamental role within the movement in the search for solutions to achieve this goal. In addition, they must inspire people to carry out the necessary transformations in each of the sectors that make up the countries, convening others and generating sustainable changes through inclusion and equity.

  • San Salvador and South Korea have established strategic alliances

    San Salvador and South Korea have established strategic alliances

    The mayor of San Salvador, Mario Durán, met with South Korean ambassador Choo Won-Hoon to discuss furthering alliances for the benefit of the capital and its residents.

    During the meeting, officials addressed issues focused on investment, tourism, and spaces for cultural exchanges. They also referred to the treatment of solid waste and possibilities for cooperation in areas related to education and technology.

    Likewise, the South Korean ambassador recognized the leadership of Mayor Mario Durán and congratulated him on the plans and projects that he is executing in San Salvador since he is in charge of the commune.

    On August 30, El Salvador and the Republic of Korea celebrated 60 years of diplomatic relations, so the mayor of the capital took the opportunity to give a present to Ambassador Choo, as a symbol of friendship and bilateral relations between the two nations.

    It was a torogoz, the Salvadoran national bird, with which the capital commune sought to represent the country’s culture and patriotism.
    For his part, the diplomat gave Duran a present from the Busan Convention and Exhibition Center, a site that represents culture and entertainment for the Asian country.

    According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Korea is a strategic partner and ally for the government of President Nayib Bukele, with whom it has managed to build strong political and economic cooperation ties, which have given way to the country’s contribution in the areas of health, education, innovation, local development, agriculture, local development, institutional strengthening, and climate change.

    Alliances with South Korea have contributed to the execution of logistics infrastructure projects.

  • Successful repurchase of El Salvador bonds generates savings of $275 million

    Successful repurchase of El Salvador bonds generates savings of $275 million

    Successful. The President of the Republic, Nayib Bukele, reported on Wednesday afternoon that the creditors of national bonds responded positively to the proposal to buy back Salvadoran bonds maturing in 2023 and 2025, announced on September 12.

    “El Salvador has successfully completed the first advance purchase operation of bonds maturing in 2023 and 2025; managing to repurchase bonds for more than $565 million,” the official wrote on Twitter.

    Bukele also pointed out that the success of this financial maneuver, which is executed for the first time in the country’s history, will allow savings of $275 million. This moment surpassed the initial projection of the Government that save between $100 million to $150 million through the anticipated purchase.

    The president stressed that the operation «was so successful» that in eight weeks he will launch another offer for the remainder of the bonds.

    For the economist and former president of the Central Reserve Bank (BCR), Carlos Acevedo, El Salvador saved more than $200 million with the early repurchase operation of its bonds.

    In his opinion, the buyback is «successful» especially in the case of the 2025 bond with the purchase of more than half and «a saving of almost $200 million with respect to face or face value and payment of interest» .

    In this regard, the vice president of the firm Exor Latin America, César Addario, explained that «the republic accepted offers to tender $133 million of its 2023 bonds and $432 million of its 2025 bonds.»

    In other words, of the $800 million of the bonds maturing in 2023, the country only has $667 million in the market, and with respect to those of 2025, a pre-purchase of more than 50% was achieved, since of the $800 at stake there are now $368 million.

    “El Salvador had established a purchase price of $910 for bonds due in 2023, and $540 for bonds due in 2025,” added the expert.

    For Addario, this unprecedented operation in the country’s history represents a significant reduction in foreign debt that will have a positive impact on El Salvador’s credit risk.

    «After this saving of repurchase and lowering of the external debt in the market, it is time for additional economic announcements, to redirect the curve and lower the EMBI, with this the repurchase of will have the expected positive impact on the country’s credit risk.»

    The Government made available for the execution of this operation $360 million of Special Drawing Rights (SDR) that were granted by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to its member countries to act during the COVID-19 pandemic, in addition to pending disbursements from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the Central American Bank for Economic Integration (CABEI), indicated the Minister of Finance, Alejandro Zelaya.

  • El Salvador congratulates Frank Rubio on his mission to space

    El Salvador congratulates Frank Rubio on his mission to space

    The Salvadoran Congress approved tonight a congratulatory statement for the Salvadoran-American astronaut for his special mission that he undertook aboard the International Space Station.

    The initiative was promoted by the New Ideas caucus, which has also asked Congress to award him the honorary distinction of Most Merited Son of El Salvador.

    «The Union always went unnoticed. Now it is making history. In his childhood, Frank Rubio lived in this place. He has today accomplished what many children have wished for. It is not only the hope of a department but also of the youth,» said deputy William Soriano.

    For his part, Deputy Walter Alemán assured us that «this day, El Salvador is making history worldwide. Let no one tell us that we are too small to be big. We celebrate the course of this compatriot’s life. We have personalities who positively represent the country, like Frank.»

    Rubio, originally from the eastern department of La Unión, will spend six months in space after the trip he undertook with two Russian astronauts.

    The first Salvadoran astronaut to make history by traveling to space, Frank Rubio, fulfilled his mission on Wednesday when he arrived at the International Space Station.

    Rubio traveled, along with two other cosmonauts from Roscosmos, Sergey Prokopyev and Dmitri Petelin, on the Soyuz MS-22 spacecraft.