The United States established diplomatic relations with Ecuador in 1848 following its withdrawal from its federation with Colombia. The United States and Ecuador share a history of partnership and cooperation, and have mutual interests in economic prosperity, democratic governance, regional security, and academic exchanges. The protection of American citizens and U.S. interests remains the top mission priority.
U.S. Assistance to Ecuador
U.S. assistance in Ecuador is designed to strengthen the rule of law and civil society, increase government transparency, improve citizen security, counter illicit trafficking, combat gender-based violence, defend fundamental freedoms, promote academic exchanges and the teaching of English, conserve biodiversity, and mitigate the risk and impact of natural disasters.
Bilateral Economic Relations
The United States is Ecuador's principal trading partner. Major U.S. exports to Ecuador include petroleum products, machinery, computers and electronic equipment, chemicals and fertilizers, transportation equipment, and cereals and grains. Ecuador benefits from duty-free entry into the United States for many of its products under the Generalized System of Preferences. U.S. imports from Ecuador include crude oil, shrimp and prawns, bananas and plantains, cocoa, and cut flowers (roses). Ecuador cancelled 17 of its bilateral investment treaties (BIT) in May 2017, including its treaty with the United States. The cancellation of the U.S.-Ecuador BIT went into effect in May 2018. The Moreno administration has expressed interest in negotiating a new BIT, as well as seeking a commercial trade agreement with the United States. U.S. direct investment in Ecuador is led by the manufacturing and wholesale/retail sectors.