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Last week we went to the bank to open a checking account. Right now, all we have is a savings account.

We thought we had all the documents lined up; copies of our ID cards, passport, cash ready to deposit. But that wasn’t enough. Partly because of the deep love of bureaucracy here, and supposedly because of the need to deter money-laundering, all banks must ask for a number of documents to open a bank account. Since we are self-employed, they wanted additional documents. These included:

*Copies of National ID Card
*Copy of our Business Taxpayer Number Document
*”Commercial Certificate” from one of our vendors, stating that they do indeed sell us stuff for our business
*Money to open the account (of course)

Maria, my wife, asked “What if I have enough income that I don’t have to work, are you telling me I can’t open a checking account?”

“I wouldn’t recommend it,” was the reply. “Savings.”

I was not amused but not surprised. We are sticking with cash operations for now.

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Welcome to Destination Ecuador!

Welcome to Destination Ecuador! My family and I have been living in Ecuador for the last four and a half years. We’ve dealt with the worst kinds of red-tape, searched out or ended up making hard-to-find ingredients ourselves, imported equipment for making chocolate confections, learned the import-export business...Continue >>

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