Candidates for the National Assembly running under the banner of the FMLN promote a platform with several points including (1) jettisoning the dollar and returning to the colón (2) repeal of CAFTA, (3) greater investment in education, health and access to safe water, and (4) avoiding foreign borrowing.
While sympathetic to these aims, the February 15, 2006 edition of Proceso calls on the FMLN to have some political realism. For example, with respect to dollarization and CAFTA Proceso points out:
It is true that dollarization did not give the expected results. However, this does not mean that reversing it would be the answer. Reversing dollarization could bring more costs than benefits, because both consumers and producers make their economic decisions according to minimizing transactions and the stability of currency. It is also unsuitable to blame dollarization the price increase. Under oligopolic and monopolic conditions as those given in El Salvador, with dollars or colones, it is difficult to reduce prices. In this sense, it would be more suitable that the FMLN advocates for a proper application of the Free Competition Law.
The other proposal of the FMLN in opposition to the interests of the ruling party is the repeal of CAFTA. According to the left wing party, CAFTA will have perverse effects for agriculture and for the economic activity of the micro and small enterprises. The Executive branch thinks the opposite: CAFTA is the best economic development strategy in the country. What is true is that CAFTA contains unfavorable laws and rules for many sectors in the country. Many of the legal norms in the agreement do work against many enterprises. This point is recognized by many industrial and entrepreneurial organizations that have some links with the ruling party. In spite of this, the FMLN should not try to repeal the agreement. It would be more feasible to push for revising the agreement in order to stop those unfavorable points. In this sense, it would be suitable that the FMLN establish consensus with some entrepreneurial sectors in order to push the Executive branch to make changes inside the CAFTA.
With respect to social investment and foreign debt, Proceso urges the FMLN to be realistic and recognize that even if it controls the legislature, it will not control the executive branch for at least the next three years. Working for political consensus may be more appropriate in these areas.
In addition to the points made by Proceso, I would note that increasing social investment may not be possible without foreign borrowing. The problem with El Salvador's foreign debt is not so much that it borrows, but that the loan proceeds do not do the greatest good for addressing the needs of the majority of the people of El Salvador.