Sebastián Piñera

Miguel Juan Sebastián Piñera Echenique (Spanish: [miˈɣel ˈxwan seβasˈtjan piˈɲeɾa etʃeˈnike] (listen); born 1 December 1949) is the 36th and current President of Chile, following his election in December 2017. He also served as the 34th President from 2010 to 2014.

Sebastián Piñera
Retrato Oficial Presidente Piñera 2018
Sebastián Piñera in 2018
34th and 36th President of Chile
Assumed office
11 March 2018
Preceded byMichelle Bachelet
In office
11 March 2010 – 11 March 2014
Preceded byMichelle Bachelet
Succeeded byMichelle Bachelet
Leader of National Renewal
In office
26 May 2001 – 10 March 2004
Preceded byAlberto Cardemil
Succeeded bySergio Díez
Senator for Eastern Santiago
In office
11 March 1990 – 11 March 1998
Preceded byPosition established
Succeeded byCarlos Bombal
President pro tempore of the Pacific Alliance
In office
5 March 2012 – 22 May 2013
Preceded byPosition established
Succeeded byEnrique Peña Nieto
Personal details
Born
Miguel Juan Sebastián Piñera Echenique

1 December 1949 (age 69)
Santiago, Chile
Political partyNational Renewal (1989–present)[a]
Other political
affiliations
Coalition for Change (2009–2013)
Chile Vamos (2015–present)
Spouse(s)
Cecilia Morel (m. 1973)
Children4
Alma materPontifical Catholic University of Chile
Harvard University
Signature
Sebastián Piñera's signature
WebsiteOfficial website

Family

Piñera is the sixth child of the marriage between José Piñera Carvallo and Magdalena Echenique Rozas. He was born on 1 December 1949, in Santiago, Chile. His siblings are María Magdalena, José Manuel, Juan Pablo, José Miguel, and María Teresa. Sebastián Piñera's ancestry includes Basque, Cantabric and Amerindian roots. Among his ancestors on his maternal side is his mother's great-great-grandmother, Luisa Pinto Garmendia, the sister of President Aníbal Pinto Garmendia and daughter of President Francisco Antonio Pinto and Luisa Garmendia Alurralde, who was a descendant of the last Inca emperor, Huayna Capac.[1] He is a nephew of the oldest living Roman Catholic bishop in the world, Bernardino Piñera.[2]

Education

Piñera's family moved to Belgium one year after his birth and later to New York City, where his father was the Chilean ambassador to the United Nations. Piñera returned to Chile in 1955 and enrolled in the Colegio del Verbo Divino ("Divine Word College"), from which he graduated in 1967.[3]

Piñera then matriculated at the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, from which he graduated in 1971 with an undergraduate degree in commercial engineering. Upon graduation, he was awarded the Raúl Iver Oxley Prize, which is given to the best overall student of each class.[4]

Piñera continued on to Harvard University on a partial Fulbright Program for postgraduate studies in economics. During his time at Harvard, Piñera and a classmate coauthored an article, "The Old South's Stake in the Inter-Regional Movement of Slaves", for the Journal of Economic History.[5] After three years at Harvard, Piñera graduated with both an M.A. and Ph.D. in Economics.[6]

Teaching career

Piñera was an educator from 1971 until 1988. He was Professor of Economics at the University of Chile, the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, and Adolfo Ibáñez University. In 1971, he was professor of Economic Political Theory in the School of Economics at the University of Chile and in 1972, he was a professor at the Valparaiso Business School.[7]

Foundations

In 1989, with Cecilia Morel, Danica Radic, and Paula Délano, Piñera created the Enterprising Women Foundation (Fundación Mujer Emprende), originally called The House of Youth (La Casa de la Juventud). The foundation aims to assist in the development of young women of lower income.[8]

In 1973, Piñera created the foundation Fundación Futuro, of which he is president and whose directors are Cristián Boza D., María Teresa Chadwick P., Hugo Montes B., Cecilia Morel M., Renato Poblete S.J., and Fabio Valdés C. The head director of the foundation is Magdalena Piñera.[9] The foundation’s mission is to help in Chile’s development of justice, freedom and democracy.[10] The foundation was renamed Fundación Cultura y Sociedad after Piñera was elected president.[11]

Under the Fundación Cultura y Sociedad (formerly Fundación Futuro), the Grupo Tantauco has the mission of environmentalism, and is administered by Juan Carlos Urquidi. It was created to support the proposals Piñera plans to institute during his presidency.[12] In 2005, Piñera created Tantauco Park (Spanish: Parque Tantauco), a 1,180 km2 (456 sq mi) private natural reserve he bought and owns on the south end of Chiloé Island, in order to protect 118,000 hectares of the region's unique ecosystem. His foundation runs the park, which is open to the public and is an ecotourist location.

In fact, Piñera bought the 118,000 hectares in Chiloé through an offshore company in Panama. He has faced pressure to cede eight hectares to 16 indigenous families whose presence pre-dates Piñera's purchase and who have spent years negotiating to obtain title to their familial lands.[13][14]

An additional project, Grupo Tantauco: Derechos Humanos, was proposed in hopes of beginning a reconciliation between the Chilean people who suffered human rights violations during Augusto Pinochet's dictatorship.[15]

Businesses

Piñera was general manager of the Banco de Talca. In 1982, a warrant was issued for his arrest on charges of violating banking law. Piñera spent 24 days in hiding while his lawyers appealed the order. A writ of habeas corpus, first rejected by the Appeals Court but then approved by the Supreme Court, acquitted Piñera.[16]

Piñera once owned 90% of Chilevisión (a terrestrial television channel broadcasting nationwide). He also owned 27% of LAN Airlines (LAN);[17] 13% of Colo-Colo,[18] a football (soccer) club; and other minor stock positions in companies such as Quiñenco, Enersis, and Soquimich.

In July 2007, Piñera was fined approximately 10 USD by Chile's securities regulator (SVS) for not withdrawing a purchase order after receiving privileged information (an infraction similar to insider trading) of LAN Airlines stock in mid-2006.[19] Piñera denied any wrongdoing and asserted that the charge was part of a political attack to damage his image. He did not appeal, stating that the court process could take years and interfere with his intention to run again for president in 2009. Later that month, he resigned from the boards of LAN and Quintec.[20]

To avoid a conflict of interest he sold Chilevisión for $160 million in 2010 to Time Warner.[17][21] He also sold his shares of LAN in several rounds between February and March 2010,[22] as well as his stake in Colo-Colo.

Piñera has built an estimated fortune of $US2.8 billion as of February 2018, according to Forbes magazine.[23] His wealth is greatly due to his involvement in introducing credit cards to Chile in the late 1970s and his subsequent investments, mainly in LAN Airlines stock. Piñera acquired shares of the formerly state-owned company from Scandinavian Airlines in 1994, as part of a joint venture with the Cueto family.[23][24]

Political career

Piñera declared that he voted No in the 1988 plebiscite on whether Augusto Pinochet should stay in power until 1997 (even though it was a secret ballot). In 1988 as Pinochet had lost the referendum and Chile was returning to democracy Piñera offered his support for the Christian Democrat Eduardo Frei Ruiz-Tagle in his pre-candidacy for president.[25] Eduardo Frei Ruiz-Tagle was the son of former president Eduardo Frei Montalva, who had together with Piñera's father founded the Christian Democrat Party of Chile and had been appointed ambassador by Frei Montalva. However, in 1989 Sebastián Piñera headed the presidential campaign of Hernán Büchi, a former finance minister of the Pinochet government. During the same election process, Piñera was elected as Senator for East Santiago (1990–1998) and soon after, joined the center-right National Renewal Party. During his term as Senator he was a member of the Senate Finance Committee.

In 1992, Piñera's attempt to become his party's candidate for the following year's Presidential election dramatically ended after he was involved in a scandal known as Piñeragate, wherein a wiretapped conversation between himself and a friend was revealed during a political television show he attended. In the conversation—made public by the television station's owner, Ricardo Claro—he conspired to have his rival for the party's nomination, Evelyn Matthei, cornered during the show by a journalist close to Piñera. The tape was then revealed to have been illegally recorded by a member of the military and given to Matthei, who then gave it to Claro. Matthei stepped down from the presidential race as well.

In 1998, Piñera opposed the arrest and detention of Augusto Pinochet, in London, initiated by Baltasar Garzón, arguing that it was an attack on the sovereignty and dignity of Chile.[26]

Piñera was president of his party from 2001 to 2004. He tried to run for Senator in 2001, but resigned his campaign after the presidential candidate of his alliance -and member of the allied party, the Independent Democratic Union (UDI)-, Joaquín Lavín made it clear he would not support candidates from Piñera's party, insisting on supporting retired Admiral Jorge Arancibia instead.

On 14 May 2005, in a surprise move Piñera announced his candidacy for the 2005 presidential election (RN was supposed to support UDI's Lavín.) He has described his political philosophy as Christian humanism.[27] In the first round of the election, on 11 December, he obtained 25.4% of the vote, which placed him in second place. Since no candidate achieved an absolute majority, a runoff election was held on 15 January 2006, between himself and of the governing coalition. Bachelet won the presidency with over 53% of the vote.

Presidential elections of 2009–2010

Piñera Presidente electo
Piñera celebrated victory alongside wife and family in 2010.

Piñera ran for President of Chile in the 2009–2010 election.[28] Since August 2009, he led in opinion polls, competing with Eduardo Frei Ruiz-Tagle, Marco Enríquez-Ominami and Jorge Arrate; all of whom are left-of-center candidates. In the 13 December 2009 election, Piñera placed first in the results with 44.05% of the votes, while Frei placed second with 29.6% of the votes.[29] Neither candidate received more than half of the total votes; therefore, according to the Constitution, Chileans returned to the polls for a final run-off election on Sunday, 17 January 2010.[30]

That evening, the third and final preliminary results were announced by the Deputy Interior Ministry. These showing accounted for 99.77% of the total ballot boxes. Of the votes, Piñera received 51.61% and Frei received 48.39%.[31] Eduardo Frei conceded after the first preliminary results, making Sebastián Piñera the new President-elect of Chile. Further results were released by the Chilean Electoral Service on 25 January 2010. Official and final results sanctioned by the Election Qualifying Court were published on the Official Gazette on 1 February 2010.

Presidenta Bachelet y Presidente-electo Piñera
Piñera meeting with Michelle Bachelet during the presidential transition.

Piñera invested an estimated 13.6 million USD in his presidential campaign, which included items such as a campaign anthem[32] and "Thank You" banners.[33] Piñera's banners and billboards have carried statements throughout the country such as "Delinquents, your party is over," and "Small businesses, Big opportunities".[34] Piñera's campaign released a national TV spot on YouTube featuring a male gay couple, something never seen before in a presidential campaign run in Chile. Amongst his promises were increasing education rates and improving international relations with the neighboring country of Perú.[35]

Piñera's victory meant a shift towards the right,[36] breaking two-decades of center-left political leadership and becoming the first elected right-wing leader in 52 years.[37]

On 28 January, Piñera suspended his membership in National Renewal, becoming unofficially an independent. RN's bylaws require successful presidential candidates from the party to renounce their association in order to govern the country fairly, foremost with the interest of the people, not with the interest of a political party or particular political philosophy.[38]

Private to public transition

The Piñera Cabinet
OfficeNamePartyTerm
PresidentSebastián PiñeraInd.11 March 2010–11 March 2014
InteriorRodrigo HinzpeterRN11 March 2010–5 November 2012
Andrés ChadwickUDI5 November 2012–11 March 2014
Foreign AffairsAlfredo MorenoInd.11 March 2010–11 March 2014
DefenseJaime RavinetInd.11 March 2010–13 January 2011
Andrés AllamandRN16 January 2011–5 November 2012
Rodrigo HinzpeterRN5 November 2012–11 March 2014
FinanceFelipe LarraínInd.11 March 2010–11 March 2014
Gen. Sec. of the
Presidency
Cristián LarrouletInd.11 March 2010–11 March 2014
Gen. Sec. of
Government
Ena von BaerUDI11 March 2010–18 July 2011
Andrés ChadwickUDI18 July 2011–5 November 2012
Cecilia PérezRN5 November 2012–11 March 2014
EconomyJuan Andrés FontaineInd.11 March 2010–18 July 2011
Pablo LongueiraUDI18 July 2011–30 April 2013
Félix de VicenteInd.7 May 2013–11 March 2014
SocialDevelopmentFelipe KastInd.11 March 2010–18 July 2011
Joaquín LavínUDI18 July 2011–6 June 2013
Bruno BarandaRN9 June 2013–11 March 2014
EducationJoaquín LavínUDI11 March 2010–18 July 2011
Felipe BulnesRN18 July 2011–29 December 2011
Harald Beyer (impeached)Ind.29 December 2011–4 April 2013
Carolina SchmidtInd.22 April 2013–11 March 2014
JusticeFelipe BulnesRN11 March 2010–18 July 2011
Teodoro RiberaRN18 July 2011–17 December 2012
Patricia PérezInd.17 December 2012–11 March 2014
LaborCamila MerinoInd.11 March 2010–14 January 2011
Evelyn MattheiUDI16 January 2011–20 July 2013
Juan Carlos JobetRN24 July 2013–11 March 2014
Public WorksHernán de SolminihacInd.11 March 2010–18 July 2011
Laurence GolborneInd.18 July 2011–5 November 2012
Loreto SilvaInd.5 November 2012–11 March 2014
HealthJaime MañalichInd.11 March 2010–11 March 2014
Housing &UrbanismMagdalena MatteUDI11 March 2010–19 April 2011
Rodrigo Pérez MackennaInd.19 April 2011–11 March 2014
AgricultureJosé Antonio GalileaRN11 March 2010–29 December 2011
Luis MayolInd.29 December 2011–11 March 2014
MiningLaurence GolborneInd.11 March 2010–18 July 2011
Hernán de SolminihacInd.18 July 2011–11 March 2014
Transport &TelecomFelipe MorandéInd.11 March 2010–14 January 2011
Pedro Pablo ErrázurizUDI16 January 2011–11 March 2014
National AssetsCatalina ParotRN11 March 2010–5 November 2012
Rodrigo Pérez MackennaInd.5 November 2012–11 March 2014
EnergyRicardo RaineriInd.11 March 2010–14 January 2011
Laurence GolborneInd.16 January 2011–18 July 2011
Fernando EcheverríaRN18 July 2011–21 July 2011
Rodrigo ÁlvarezUDI22 July 2011–27 March 2012
Jorge BunsterInd.3 April 2012–11 March 2014
EnvironmentMaría Ignacia BenítezUDI11 March 2010–11 March 2014
WomenCarolina SchmidtInd.11 March 2010–22 April 2013
Loreto SeguelUDI22 April 2013–11 March 2014
Culture & the
Arts
Luciano Cruz-CokeInd.11 March 2010–6 June 2013
Roberto AmpueroInd.9 June 2013–11 March 2014
SportsGabriel Ruiz-TagleUDI14 November 2013–11 March 2014

Piñera became the first billionaire to be sworn into the Chilean Presidency.[39] He offered to sell his shares in major corporations before being sworn in on 11 March 2010, in order to avoid conflicts of interest. Piñera has placed US$400 million in blind trusts.[40]

The Monday following Piñera's election, expectations of sale from his largest holdings created a surge in trade of Axxion and LAN shares, causing three brief suspensions (19–20, 22 January 2010) in the Santiago Stock Exchange in order to ease trade. Axxion shares more than tripled before falling 39% on Friday, 22 January.[41] Bachelet's Finance Minister Andrés Velasco urged Piñera to get the sale "sorted out quickly."[42] The value of Piñera's interest in Axxion was estimated at 700 million dollars USD, of his 1.2 billion dollar USD fortune at the beginning of that week.[43]

On 5 February, Piñera confirmed plans to sell his 26.3% stake in LAN airlines at an extraordinary shareholders' meeting for his main holding company, Axxion. Under the pact, Axxion shareholders have agreed to fix the price of the sale, estimated at 1.5 billion USD. The Cueto family, who at that point held 25.5% of LAN through their holding company Costa Verde Aeronáutica, had the first option to purchase the stake.[44] On 18 February, Axxion posted a statement on their website confirming the sale of a 21.18% stake in LAN Airlines to the Cueto family for 1.23 billion USD. Announcement regarding the sale of the remaining shares was pending until March 2010, when the whole package left Piñera's hands.[45]

Piñera sold his 9.7% stake in the upscale private hospital Clinica Las Condes at a price of 25,113 CLP per share (48.00 USD) through his holding company Bancard on Tuesday, 16 February. The total sale of the 792,000 shares grossed 37.85 million USD and was purchased by the brokerage firm Celfin.[46] The proceeds from the sale will go to paying off Bancard debt.[47]

Piñera announced on February he had the intention to transfer 100% of his stake in Chilevisión to a non-for-profit organization called Fundación Cultura y Sociedad (formerly Fundación Futuro), of which he is owner.[48] The foundation's board will include some of the station's current executives. Under that proposal, Piñera maintains the right to remove and replace the foundation's president at any given time.[49] Cristián Patricio Larroulet Vignau, current Minister of the Secretariat of the Presidency of Chile, stated that Piñera was honouring his promise of removing himself from private corporations, as Chilevision will become the property of a non-profit organization. MP Cristián Monckeberg (RN), stated there is no law obligating Piñera to do otherwise and thus this decision is legally legitimate.[48]. The option above finally did not take place, Piñera decided to sell the TV station, and after a failed attempt in May 2010 with the Linzor Capital investment fund,[50] the President announced it sold Chilevisión to Time Warner, in late August 2010.

Piñera said he won't sell his 12.5% stake in Blanco y Negro, company that owns the nation's popular soccer team Colo-Colo. He has stated, "We want big things and not only achieve local victories. The idea is to return the Copa Libertadores to Chile. That is our great goal."[51] Although he will remain part owner, he will take no administrative duties or role while President.[52]

Council of Ministers

Piñera announced what he calls his "cabinet of unity" on Tuesday, 9 February 2010, at 18:00 hours (local time), in Chile's National Historical Museum. The list of names was presented the previous day to the leader of the National Renewal Party, Carlos Larraín, and the leader of the Independent Democratic Union, Juan Antonio Coloma. The cabinet is made up of 16 men and 6 women, with an average age of 49. Amongst Piñera's nominees is Jaime Ravinet, who is defense minister of the current president's cabinet and a former member of the Christian Democratic Party, from which he resigned upon accepting Piñera's cabinet offer. Also a nominee is Cristián Larroulet, who was an economic planning adviser under Pinochet.[53]

During his first official meeting with his Council of Ministers on Wednesday, 10 February, Piñera issued a formal memorandum calling upon all members to renounce their positions in all private companies by 28 February in order to avoid conflicts of interest. The memorandum also said that in regards to national heritage, secretaries of state whose affiliation with companies having direct receipt of fiscal monies must either remove themselves from those associations or honor the restrictions of their competitors.[54] Ten of his 22 ministers have involvement in companies with significant financial means.

2017 presidential elections

Logo Piñera Presidente 2V
Piñera's campaign logo in the second round of the election

On 17 December 2017, Sebastián Piñera was elected president of Chile for a second term.[55] He received 36% of the votes, the highest percentages among all 8 candidates in the 2017 elections. In the second round, Piñera faced Alejandro Guillier, a television news anchor who represented Bachelet’s New Majority (Nueva Mayoría) coalition. Piñera won the elections with 54% of the votes.[28]

First presidency (2010–2014)

Sebastián Piñera asume como Presidente de Chile en solemne ceremonia en el Congreso Nacional
Piñera receives the presidential sash from Senate President Jorge Pizarro at the National Congress of Chile on 11 March 2010.
Fotografía oficial del Presidente Sebastián Piñera - 2
Piñera's official portrait for his first term as president.
Sebastián Piñera, Fotografía Oficial junto a su gabinete ministerial (3)
Sebastián Piñera and his Council of Ministers in Chile's Palacio de Cerro Castillo

Piñera was sworn in as the 35th President of the Republic of Chile on 11 March 2010, in a ceremony held in a plenary session of the National Congress in Valparaíso. In the same ceremony, Piñera's Cabinet ministers were sworn in. The ceremony was also marked by a 6.9 Mw earthquake and subsequent aftershocks that upset the invitees.[56] Shortly after, the National Congress building was evacuated due to a tsunami alert that proved to be false a couple of hours later. On 12 October 2010, Piñera rallied his countrymen in the rescue of 33 trapped miners, all of whom were rescued after 70 days following a mining accident. "Chile will never be the same", he said to the miners' foreman, Luis Urzúa, as he (the last of the miners to emerge from the cavern) greeted Piñera, in a broadcast carried live across the globe. Despite much goodwill in Chile following this, many Chileans are still waiting on Piñera to rectify anti-terrorism laws in Chile which effectively mean the indigenous Mapuche people can be dealt with as "terrorists". This matter has led to hunger strikes which started before the mining disaster, and are set to continue afterwards.[57]

In January 2011 he faced the protest in Magallanes Region in response to a proposed increase in the price of natural gas there by 16.8%. The protests left more than two thousand cars isolated while trying to cross from the Argentine province of Tierra del Fuego to the province of Santa Cruz through Chilean territory. Another 1,500 tourists were left without movement in Torres del Paine National Park after routes to Puerto Natales and El Calafate were cut.[58] In consequence, on 14 January, Minister Secretary General of Government Ena von Baer announced changes in Sebastián Piñera's government cabinet, including the resignation of Ricardo Raineri as Energy Minister. Laurence Golborne became Mining and Energy Minister, on 16 January.[59]

In March 2011, President Piñera led a state visit to Spain to boost relations between the two countries. While in Spain, President and Mrs Piñera, with Prince Felipe and Princess Letizia, opened the exhibition ”Don Qui. El Quijote de Matta”, at the Cervantes Institute of Madrid.[60]

Amidst the severe 2011 Chilean student protests Piñera shuffled his cabinet and removed Joaquín Lavín from the post of minister of education. With respect to the protest, Piñera has defended for-profit activity in education and proposed to legalize it, rejecting the students' demands for the public ownership of educational establishments.[61] During August 2011, Piñera's public approval declined precipitously amidst continuous protests, to the extent that some polls indicated that he was the least popular Chilean leader since Augusto Pinochet. His approval ratings dropped to as low as 22% according to a CERC survey.[62] As such, Piñera's chances of passing sought reforms were seen as remote.[63]

As president, Piñera expressed support for the Argentine claim on the Falkland Islands, referring to "the unrenounceable rights of Argentina on the islands".[64]

In March 2012, Piñera visited Vietnam with the intention of increasing cooperation between the two countries in general and with Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam's most populous and largest economic hub, in particular. HCM City also called for a Chilean sister city while receiving Piñera on 23 March. The visit included the signing of a bilateral trade agreement and several cooperation pacts in education, tourism, culture and finance.[65]

Criticism

Aprobacion Sebastian Piñera
Levels of approval (blue) and disapproval (red) of Piñera's term from 2010 to 2014, according to the Adimark survey. Piñera left office in March 2014 with an approval rating of 50%.

Early in 2012 physicist Frank Duarte sharply criticized Piñera's performance in the handling of the Chilean–Peruvian maritime dispute at The Hague, deemed as favoring commercial interests over the interest of the Chilean people, and called for Chile's withdrawal from The Hague.[66] Following the adverse ruling against Chile in 2014, several political figures in Chile, from a variety of political parties, also called for Chile's withdrawal from The Hague that would, in addition, imply a withdrawal from the Pact of Bogota.[67][68]

In December 2011 during a state visit to Mexico a joke made by Piñera where he compared women with politicians caused uproar in Chile, sparking criticism from his own minister Carolina Schmidt who said of the joke that it was "hurting to many women".[69] In the joke Piñera said that "when a lady says "no" it means maybe, when she says maybe it means yes and when she says yes she is not a lady."[70] The Chilean Network Against Domestic and Sexual Violence called the joke "misogynic" and "a shame for the whole country".[70] Previously on a state visit to Peru in 2011 Piñera received criticism for his informal style after he revealed to Peruvian president-elect Ollanta Humala that he was a descendant of the Inca Huayna Capac.[71] Senator Jorge Pizarro criticized Piñera's comment to Ollanta Humala, calling for more careful and respectful attitudes.[72]

Second presidency (2018–present)

Presidential styles of
Sebastián Piñera
Flag of the President of Chile
Reference styleSu Excelencia, el Presidente de la República.
"His Excellency, the President of the Republic"
Spoken stylePresidente de Chile.
"President of Chile"
Alternative styleSeñor Presidente.
"Mr. President"
Sebastián Piñera asume como Presidente de Chile y da inicio su segundo mandato 5
President Sebastian Piñera receives presidential sash and the O'Higgins Pioche for the second time, 11 March 2018

On December 17th, Piñera won the second round of the Chilean General election, defeating the left wing candidate Alejandro Guillier to become President-Elect. Piñera took office for a second time on March 11th, 2018, succeeding the outgoing Michelle Bachelet.

Cabinet

In January 2018, Piñera unveiled his cabinet to harsh criticism: his interior minister, Andrés Chadwick, was a vocal supporter of Pinochet dictatorship, which had previously appointed him president of the Catholic University Students Federation.[73] In 2012 Chadwick expressed "deep repentance" for this support after discovering "over the years" serious human rights violations committed by the dictatorship, while defending the regime on other grounds.[74]

Chadwick and justice minister Hernán Larraín were also "supporters and defenders of the secretive German enclave Colonia Dignidad, which was established by the fugitive Nazi officer and paedophile Paul Schäfer in the early 60s," according to the Guardian UK.[75] Colonia Dignidad was used by Pinochet security officials to torture and murder opponents of the regime.[76][77]

Other appointe with ties to the Pinochet includes mining minister Baldo Prokurica, a governor under the Pinochet dictatorship.[78]

Public image

Piñera is associated with bad luck.[79] The BBC has listed a series of situations of "bad luck" concerning Piñera's presidency: the 2010 Maule earthquake followed by another quake during Piñera's inauguration ceremony, the mining accident of 2010, the 2010 Santiago prison fire, the 2011 Puyehue-Cordón Caulle eruption and the 2012 wildfires.[79]

José Mujica, president of Uruguay, stated Piñera's low approval rates might be caused by a lack of "glamour".[80]

In April 2012 The Economist described Piñera as being considered an "inept politician" by both the opposition and supporters.[81] The Chilean government responded by stating that The Economist's comment was disrespectful.[82] His lapses, errors and inconveniences have been labelled "piñericosas" in Chile,[83] in a phenomenon comparable to Bushisms in the United States. Piñera notably confused the fictional character Robinson Crusoe with Alexander Selkirk while giving a speech on a state visit to Robinson Crusoe Island.

In June 2013, after visiting President Obama in the White House,[84] he said, "I'm going to sit at the President of the United States' desk," breaking the White House's political protocols. Alfredo Moreno Charme, Minister of Foreign Affairs, said "How many other presidents have done the same?" and Obama responded, "This is the only one," causing laughter between those there. Piñera then justified his abrupt actions by stating his daughter was born in the United States.[85]

Personal life

Http 22-02-2012 Primera Dama en Sn Clemente
Piñera and Morel in February 2012

Piñera married Cecilia Morel in December 1973. They were neighbours in the Avenida Américo Vespucio, Santiago. They have four children, born in 1975, 1978, 1982 and 1984. All of them have university degrees.[86] Piñera is also a member of Washington D.C.-based think tank, the Inter-American Dialogue.[87]

Honours

National honours

Foreign honours

In popular culture

Actor Bob Gunton portrays Piñera in the 2015 film The 33, directed by Patricia Riggen.

Notes

  1. ^ Membership suspended while President.

References

  1. ^ Retamal Favereau, Julio; Celis Atria, Carlos; y Muñoz Correa, Juan Guillermo – "Familias Fundadoras de Chile, 1540–1600", Editorial Universitaria, Santiago, 1992. pg. 789
  2. ^ "Monseñor Bernardino Piñera y la relación con su sobrino Presidente". periodicoencuentro.cl. Retrieved 22 September 2016.
  3. ^ (in Spanish) Universia Sebastián Piñera Perfil Archived 7 February 2015 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ "Caminos cruzados", El Mercurio (in Spanish).
  5. ^ Kotlikoff, Laurence J. & Piñera, Sebastián (1977), "The Old South's Stake in the Inter-Regional Movement of Slaves, 1850–1860", Journal of Economic History, 37 (2): 434–450, doi:10.1017/s002205070009700x, JSTOR 2118765
  6. ^ Sandoval, Roberto Castillo (30 July 2009), "La tesis doctoral de Sebastián Piñera", Noticias secretas (in Spanish)
  7. ^ "Sebastián Piñera Echeñique — Senador", Reseñas parlamentarias — Biblioteca del Congreso Nacional de Chile (in Spanish)
  8. ^ (in Spanish) Fundacion Mujer Emprende Quienes Somos Archived 15 January 2010 at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ "Magdalena Piñera, directora de la Fundación Futuro lanzó "Ojo con el Ejército de Chile" (Video)". www.estrellaarica.cl. Retrieved 19 December 2017.
  10. ^ (in Spanish) Fundanción Futuro Quienes Somos
  11. ^ (in Spanish) Terra Semana clave para fundación a la que Piñera traspasará propiedad de Chilevisión
  12. ^ (in Spanish) Piñera2010 Conoce las propuestas medioambientales del Grupo Tantauco Archived 7 December 2009 at the Wayback Machine
  13. ^ https://www.reuters.com/article/us-chile-landrights-island/mystical-islanders-divided-over-chiles-giant-bridge-project-idUSKCN1GD5JE
  14. ^ http://www.elmostrador.cl/noticias/pais/2017/06/09/familias-que-viven-en-tantauco-presionan-a-pinera-para-que-entregue-hectareas-antes-de-las-primarias
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External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Michelle Bachelet
President of Chile
2010–2014
Succeeded by
Michelle Bachelet
Preceded by
Michelle Bachelet
President of Chile
2018–present
Incumbent
Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Peter O'Neill
Chair of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation
2019
Incumbent
2005–06 Chilean presidential election

A presidential election took place in Chile on Sunday, December 11, 2005. None of the four candidates received an absolute majority, thus a runoff election among the top two candidates —Michelle Bachelet from the Coalition of Parties for Democracy and Sebastián Piñera from National Renewal— was held on Sunday, January 15, 2006. Bachelet was victorious with 53.49% of the vote. She succeeded President Ricardo Lagos on March 11, 2006 for a period of four years, after Congress reformed the Constitution in September 2005 and reduced the term from six years.

The 2005 Chilean parliamentary election was held in conjunction with the presidential election.

2009–10 Chilean presidential election

The first round of the Chilean presidential election of 2009–2010 was held on Sunday December 13, 2009. Based on the two-round system, since none of the candidates secured the absolute majority needed to take the presidency outright, a run-off between the two most-voted candidates —center-right Sebastián Piñera and center-left Eduardo Frei Ruiz-Tagle— was held on Sunday, January 17, 2010. Piñera, who won the runoff with about 51.6% of the vote, succeeded Michelle Bachelet on March 11, 2010. Parliamentary elections took place on the same day.

Chilean politics is dominated by two main coalitions: the center-left Concert of Parties for Democracy (Concertación de Partidos por la Democracia), composed of the Christian Democrat Party, the Socialist Party, the Party for Democracy, and the Social Democrat Radical Party; and the center-right Alliance for Chile (Alianza por Chile), composed of the Independent Democratic Union and National Renewal. The Concertación selected former president Eduardo Frei Ruiz-Tagle as their candidate, while the Alianza chose former presidential candidate Sebastián Piñera, who is supported by the newly created Coalition for Change electoral group. The far-left Juntos Podemos Más pact selected former Socialist Party member Jorge Arrate as its candidate. Another former Socialist party member, deputy Marco Enríquez-Ominami (MEO), ran as independent.

2010 in Chile

Events in the year 2010 in Chile.

Alfredo Moreno Charme

Alfredo Moreno Charme (born August 4, 1956) is a Chilean diplomat and politician.

Charme was born in Santiago, Chile. He was the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Chile under President Sebastián Piñera.

Andrés Allamand

Andrés Allamand Zavala (born February 7, 1956), a Chilean politician, is the founder and one of the past leaders of Renovación Nacional. He is of French, and Basque descent. On January 14, 2011 he was named Minister of Defense by president Sebastián Piñera. He was sworn in on January 16, 2011 and left office on November 5, 2012. Allamand is a member of the Inter-American Dialogue.

Chacao Channel

The Chacao Channel (Spanish: "Canal de Chacao") is located in Los Lagos Region, Chile and separates Chiloé Island from mainland Chile. The channel was created during the Quaternary glaciations by successive glaciers that flowed down from the Andes to the coast. The construction of a bridge connecting the island with the continent was discussed at government level for some time, but during the first government of Michelle Bachelet (2006–2010) it was turned down due to its high cost in comparison with other proposals that could be done to benefit islanders. Later, it was reactivated during Sebastián Piñera government, and finally auctioned

The channel connects the Pacific Ocean and Gulf of Ancud.

Chilevisión

Chilevisión (CHV) is a Chilean free-to-air television channel. Is the third oldest Chilean television network, and was formerly called Canal 9 de Televisión de la Universidad de Chile, Teleonce (Universidad de Chile Televisión) and RTU (Red de Televisión de la Universidad de Chile), this TV station was owned by Universidad de Chile, a Chilean state university. This educational institution sold a significant percentage of its TV channel to Venevisión, changing its name to Chilevisión. It was later sold to Claxson Interactive Group and then to Chilean investor and president Sebastián Piñera.

On 28 August 2010, it was announced that Turner Broadcasting System Latin America had reached an agreement to purchase it. This assets do not include the analog television channel frequency which is still owned by Universidad de Chile and is used under a paid usufruct scheme, similar to a lease. This contract expires in 2018 and only affects the analog frequencies used by the station. On 6 October 2010 the purchase was materialized.

Coalition for Change

The Coalition for Change was a presidential and parliamentary electoral coalition that groups the supporters of President Sebastián Piñera for the 2009-2010 Chilean election. Its predecessor was the Alliance for Chile (Alianza por Chile). The constituent parties are the Independent Democratic Union (Unión Demócrata Independiente), National Renewal (Renovación Nacional), ChileFirst (ChilePrimero), the movements Grand North (Norte Grande), and Christian Humanism (Humanista Cristiano). This coalition speech aspired to leave behind divisions that have polarized Chilean society, and his objective was to work together for the future of Chile by creating a democracy representative of the diverse creeds with respect, tolerance and friendship.

Estación Polar Científica Conjunta Glaciar Unión

The Estación Polar Científica Conjunta Glaciar Unión (Joint Scientific Polar Station "Union Glacier") or Union Glacier Station is a summer antarctic base of Chile situated in the Union Glacier, in the Ellsworth mountains. It is operated by the Chilean Antarctic Institute and the three armed forces of Chile joint, from November to January. It was inaugurated in 4 January 2014 by the president Sebastián Piñera Echeñique.There moved the polar stations of Teniente Arturo Parodi Alister and Antonio Huneeus, after the transfer in November 2010 of the operations of the private american company Antarctic Logistics & Expeditions LLC that operates the aerial track on the Union Glacier since December 2008 and the Union Glacier Camp.This base together with the American base Amundsen-Scott and the Chinese base Kunlun, are the nearer active bases to the South Pole, the chilean one is 1080 km of distance from the South Pole.

Estadio Monumental David Arellano

The Estadio Monumental is a soccer Stadium in Macul, south-east of the centre of the Chilean capital Santiago. It serves as the home ground of Colo-Colo, and on occasions also for other clubs and the national football team. The stadium has a current spectator capacity of 47,347. The actual playing field is named after David Arellano, the founder of Colo-Colo, therefore, on occasions the whole stadium is referred to as Estadio Monumental David Arellano.

The stadium was first opened in 1975 with a double-header in front of 25,599 people. In the first match Santiago Morning and Santiago Wanderers drew 1-1 and in the main event Colo-Colo defeated Deportes Aviación 1-0, Carlos Orellana being the scorer. However, the stadium proved unsuitable for ongoing use, and therefore only five more matches took place there for the time being.

Completed in its current form in 1989, it was reopened in September of that year with a match between Colo-Colo and CA Peñarol from Uruguay, which the hosts won 2-1, thanks to goals by Marcelo Barticciotto and Leonel Herrera. The official capacity of the stadium then was between 62,500 and 65,000 spectators. The highest ever recorded attendance when 69,305 spectators saw a league match between Colo-Colo and Club Universidad de Chile in 1992. In the 2016-17 season, Colo-Colo drew an average home league attendance of 21,509 for the Apertura and 23,229 for the Clausura. The stadium was in 1991 home to the second Copa Libertadores final, won by Colo-Colo 3-0, making it the sole Chilean club to win the trophy.

Accidents, including a fatality in 1993, instigated various modernisations which led to a reduction of the capacity to the current 47,000 spectators.

The stadium is also rented out to club Santiago Morning and other Chilean teams that require holding games on the international tournament scale. It has also been used by the Chile national football team when the Estadio Nacional, the main football stadium of the country, is unavailable. The American rock band Pearl Jam played at the stadium on November 16, 2011, as part of their 20th anniversary tour.Its principal tenant and owner is the corporate entity Blanco y Negro that runs Colo-Colo and for which Chilean billionaire and President Sebastián Piñera is a major shareholder.

Humanist Party (Chile)

The Humanist Party (Spanish: Partido Humanista) is a progressive left-wing political party in Chile, founded in 1984.

In December 1990, Laura Rodríguez became the first elected representative of any Humanist Party in the world after winning a seat as part of the Concertación coalition, after Augusto Pinochet handed over power.

At the last legislative elections, 16 December 2001, the party won 1.1% of the vote but no seats. The party is a member of the Humanist International.

For the 2005 presidential elections, the Humanist Party was a member of the coalition Juntos Podemos Más (Together We Can Do/Achieve More). Their presidential candidate Tomás Hirsch won 5.37% of the vote in a 4-way race between Michelle Bachelet, Sebastián Piñera, and Joaquín Lavín in the 2005 elections. He polled 4th place and therefore did not make the runoff.On 12 March 2013 they selected economist and university professor Marcel Claude as their candidate for the 2013 presidential election.Since 2017, the Humanist party is part of the Broad Front, a new political coalition. Their presidential candidate was Beatriz Sánchez who had a surprising voting, winning 20.27 % of the votes; as well, the humanists won the elections of three deputies: Tomás Hirsch, Pamela Jiles and Florcita Motuda.

Julio Ibarra

Julio Diego Ibarra Maldonado (born July 15, 1966) is a Chilean politician. Ibarra was the Governor of Cardenal Caro Province since he was appointed by President of Chile Sebastián Piñera on March 16, 2010. He left office on March 12, 2014.Between 2000 and 2004, Ibarra had also worked as Councillor of the commune of Pedro Aguirre Cerda in the Santiago Metropolitan Region.

La Nación (Chile)

La Nación is a Chilean newspaper created in 1917 by Eliodoro Yáñez and presided until 1927 by Carlos Dávila. It was a private company until 1927, when it was expropriated by president Carlos Ibáñez del Campo, and since then has remained a state property. Currently it is owned by Empresa Periodística La Nación S.A., which in turn is 69% owned by the State of Chile.

Is published by the SA La Nacion newspaper company that also publishes the Official Journal of the Republic of Chile. Company revenues come primarily from sales of the Official Journal and the printing division of the company, and currently the market share of the newspaper (except La Nación Domingo, the Sunday edition) is marginal, due to its low circulation.

List of presidential trips made by Sebastián Piñera

This is a list of international trips made by Chilean President Sebastián Piñera in his second mandate.

Loreto Silva

María Loreto Silva Rojas (born 29 June 1964) was a Chilean deputy minister under President Sebastián Piñera.

Ministry General Secretariat of the Presidency (Chile)

The Ministry General Secretariat of the Presidency (Spanish: Ministerio Secretaría General de la Presidencia) is the cabinet-level administrative office (equivalent to the president's Chief of Staff) which serves in an advisory role to the President of Chile and her or his ministers in the governments' relations with the National Congress of Chile, the development of the legislative agenda, and keeping track of the bills and other legislative activity in Congress as they pertain to the government.The ministry was created in 1990 during the government of Patricio Aylwin, and the first appointee and longest-serving Minister so far was Edgardo Boeninger Kausel.

The current Minister Secretary-General of the Presidency is Gonzalo Blumel, who was appointed by President Sebastián Piñera on March 11, 2018.

National Renewal (Chile)

National Renewal (Spanish: Renovación Nacional, RN) is a liberal conservative political party belonging to the Chilean centre-right political coalition called Chile Vamos in conjunction with the Independent Democratic Union (UDI), the Independent Regionalist Party (PRI) and Political Evolution (Evópoli). The party president is the deputy Mario Desbordes, and its principal leaders are Sebastián Piñera, current President of Chile and Andrés Allamand, former minister of defense, former presidential candidate and Senator.

Political positions of Sebastián Piñera

Chilean president Sebastián Piñera has declared his position on many political issues through his public comments and legislative record. While he belongs to the right-wing party Renovación Nacional Piñera himself says he is "almost" a Christian Democrat.

Rodrigo Hinzpeter

Rodrigo Javier Hinzpeter Kirberg (born 27 October 1965) is a Chilean lawyer and politician. He was one of the founders of National Renewal, a center-right political party. He was appointed Interior Minister on 11 March 2010 by President of Chile Sebastián Piñera. On 5 November 2012 he was appointed Defense Minister and his term ended on 11 March 2014.

Heads of state of the South American countries

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