Jamil Mahuad

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Jamil Mahuad
41st President of Ecuador
In office
August 10, 1998 – January 21, 2000
Vice PresidentGustavo Noboa
Preceded byFabián Alarcón
Succeeded byGustavo Noboa
Mayor of Quito
In office
August 10, 1992 – August 10, 1998
Preceded byRodrigo Paz
Succeeded byRoque Sevilla
Personal details
Jorge Jamil Mahuad Witt

(1949-07-29) July 29, 1949 (age 71)
Loja, Ecuador
Political partyPopular Democracy
Tatiana Calderón
(m. 1971)
ChildrenPaola Mahuad Calderón
Alma materPontificia Universidad Católica del Ecuador

Jorge Jamil Mahuad Witt (born July 29, 1949) is an Ecuadorian lawyer, academic and former politician. He was the 41st president of Ecuador from August 10, 1998, to January 21, 2000.

Early life[edit]

Mahuad was born in Loja, Ecuador. He is of Lebanese and German descent.[1]

Mahuad attended Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government, and received a Master of Public Administration in 1989. He was a US State Department-sponsored Fulbright Fellow.[2]


Mahuad initially ran in the presidential election of 1988, coming in a distant fifth place. Ten years later, he won the presidential election by a very close margin. The defeated candidate Álvaro Noboa asked for a vote recount, which was denied by the authority responsible. There was a severe economic crisis in Ecuador (including the 1998–99 Ecuador banking crisis), which had led to a 60% cut in the armed forces budget. Mahuad's popularity rating had fallen from 60% in October 1998 to 6% in January 2000. In the final days of 1999, he announced the dollarization of the economy of Ecuador, along with a number of International Monetary Fund measures.

Mahuad was forced to resign after a week of demonstrations by indigenous Ecuadorians and a military revolt led by Lucio Gutiérrez. Before his election as president, he served as Mayor of Quito from 1992 to 1998.

He proposed economic reforms that produced the "dollarization" of the economy. He declared a freeze in bank accounts in order to control rampant inflation. This caused massive unrest as the lower classes struggled to convert their now useless Ecuadorian sucres to US dollars and lost wealth, while the upper classes (whose members already had their wealth invested in US dollars) gained wealth in turn. Under Mahuad's recession-plagued term, the economy shrank significantly, and inflation reached levels of up to 60 percent.

During Mahuad's presidency, a historic peace agreement with Peru was signed, resolving long-standing border disputes. Under the agreement, Ecuador renounced its claims to sovereignty of the disputed territory under the Rio de Janeiro Protocol, and in return, Peru deeded ownership of one km² of territory to Ecuador. Mahuad concluded the peace with Peru on October 26, 1998.[3]


Mahuad is also a Senior Advisor at CMI International Group in Cambridge, MA.

In May 2014, Ecuador’s National Court of Justice sentenced him to 12 years jail term on embezzlement charges.[4]


  1. ^ Kurzman, Charles. "Islam in the Americas (slideshow[dead link])". February 17, 2006.
  2. ^ "Heads of State/Government". www.State.Gov. US State Department. March 6, 2020. Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  3. ^ La difícil construcción de la sanidad pública en Ecuador, Loïc Ramirez, El Mundo diplomatico, febrero de 2018
  4. ^ "Ex-Ecuadorian president Jamil Mahuad jailed for 12 years". IANS. news.biharprabha.com. Retrieved May 30, 2014.

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Fabián Alarcón
President of Ecuador
August 10, 1998-January 21, 2000
Succeeded by
Gustavo Noboa