September 24, 2007 / 11:07 PM / 10 years ago

UPDATE 1-Ecuador's Correa says has funds to pay debt in 2008

(Adds Correa quote, details and background)

NEW YORK, Sept 24 (Reuters) - Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa said on Monday the country has enough funds to honor its international debt payments next year and could issue debt in foreign markets in 2008.

“We haven’t had any problems with financing, and next year we don’t see a big financing problem,” Correa told Reuters in an interview during a visit to New York for the United Nations General Assembly meeting.

Correa, who has worried foreign investors with pledges to restructure the country’s foreign debt, reiterated that the country will honor debt payments if it has enough funds.

“As a matter of fact the weight of the debt has dropped sharply,” said Correa.

When asked if his government has ruled out issuing new debt next year, Correa said “we don’t rule it out, but it’s not something that we will lose our sleep on.”

Correa also said the country has not discarded allowing open pit mining in the country’s nascent mining sector if its carried out with enough government controls. (Reporting by Adriana Garcia)

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