Profile: Chile’s President Sebastian Piñera


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From billionaire president to civilian again once more – who’s Sebastian Piñera?

Sebastian Piñera has returned to the Chilean presidency after 4 years of civilian lifestyles.

The conservative billionaire, who represents the right-wing Chile Vamos coalition, was once up to now president between 2010 and 2014.

Chile does now not permit re-election of the sitting president, however does let former presidents run once more after any person else has held the place of job – that is what he has performed, profitable the run-off vote.

So who’s the as soon as and long run President Piñera?

Billionaire businessman

When he first changed into president in 2010, Mr Piñera changed into Chile’s first conservative president because the finish of army rule in 1990.

The Harvard-trained economist displaced the rustic’s first feminine president, Michelle Bachelet, promising to show his industry acumen to the rustic’s financial enlargement.

Born in 1949, he stays one among Chile’s richest males, with an estimated private fortune of more or less $2.7bn (£2bn).

A lot of his cash was once made within the 1980s when he presented bank cards to Chile via his corporate Bancard. He additionally invested in Chile’s largest primary airline, Lan Chile, the rustic’s best soccer membership, Colo Colo, and a tv channel.

When he changed into president, then again, he promised to unload a number of holdings to keep away from attainable conflicts.

President Piñera

In each his campaigns, Mr Piñera has vowed to use his industry expertise to govt.

He enjoys extensive make stronger from Chile’s industry group, and united the rustic’s conservative wing.

But if first campaigning, he needed to distance himself from the centre-right’s political previous, and the legacy of the right-wing army govt of Gen Augusto Pinochet, who was once in energy from 1973 to 1990.

He promised exchange, a focal point on jobs, and stated he would each take on poverty and spice up the personal sector.

However the first days of his presidency pressured him to switch a lot of his plans.

On 27 February, 2010, a formidable earthquake struck Chile, killing some 500 other folks and destroying tens of 1000’s of houses.

When the brand new president entered place of job two weeks later, he stated the devastation intended he must think again his plans, and stated his management would now oversee “a central authority of reconstruction”.

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Media captionIn 2010, the president greeted 33 males as they emerged from a collapsed mine

He additionally won a large recognition score spice up for his control of the 2010 Chilean mine cave in, during which 33 males had been effectively rescued from the bottom after 69 days.

However his first time period was once now not with out problems. Popular scholar protests marred the next 12 months, and he shuffled his cupboard two times in only some months.

He was once additionally noticed as susceptible to quite a lot of gaffes.

On one instance, he praised a “courageous and mature” a pregnant 11-year-old rape sufferer, and on every other, he landed his helicopter on a major highway after operating out of gasoline.

Go back to energy

When Mr Piñera’s time period ended, he was once changed by means of the girl he had, himself, changed – Michelle Bachelet. Through the top of his 2d time period, the pair can have traded the presidency between them for 16 years.

She introduced a modern schedule to the presidency and several other reforms, culminating within the easing of Chile’s strict abortion regulations in 2017.

However conservatives stated her reforms went too a ways, and Mr Piñera campaigned, partly, on reining in a few of her adjustments.

He additionally accused Bachelet of monetary mismanagement – which, as in his first marketing campaign, was once a core a part of his election technique.

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8 years after his first win, Mr Piñera celebrated every other victory

He completed the primary spherical of balloting with a 14-point lead, with the left-leaning vote cut up amongst different applicants.

However Mr Piñera additionally gave the impression to have realized from the scholar protests he confronted in his first time period. All the way through the run-off marketing campaign, he reversed his stance at the growth of loose upper training – a Bachelet coverage which he had up to now criticised.

Within the ultimate vote Mr Piñera emerged victorious by means of a margin of a number of issues. After his victory, he pledged to unite the rustic’s political factions.

“Each and every time that we Chileans have faced each and every different, and noticed each and every different as enemies, we’ve got suffered our best defeats and largest grief,” he stated.

“Everyone knows that each and every time we’ve got united as Chileans, we’ve got completed our most pretty triumphs, and our best victories.”

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