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27/08/2009 | FACTBOX-Policies of Chile's main presidential candidates

Reuters Staff

Chile's presidential election is shaping up to be a three-way race between a conservative billionaire, a former president from the ruling center-left coalition and an ex-film producer running as an independent.

 

The two leading candidates in the Dec. 13 ballot, center-right businessman Sebastian Pinera and center-left former President Eduardo Frei, will likely keep the prudent fiscal policies that have made Chile's economy one of Latin America's most stable, analysts say.

But Pinera wants the private sector to take more leadership in stimulating the economy and creating new jobs, while Frei emphasizes the state's role but has not yet announced his economic policy platform.

Left-leaning independent Marco Enriquez-Ominami, 36, has broken away from the ruling coalition and advocates tighter state control over health, education, transport and social security. He would also raise taxes on mining and corporate sector and lower income tax.

The policies of the three main candidates are as follows:

Sebastian Pinera:

* Create 1 million jobs between 2010-2014.

* Give incentives to private sector, particularly small- and mid-sized companies, to fuel job creation and spur economic growth rather than rely on state.

* Allow private pension funds to take up to a combined 20 percent stake in state copper giant Codelco.

* Revamp management of state sector giants like Codelco and state-run oil firm ENAP, as well as decentralizing the state.

* Look at merging the bourse and banks regulators.

* Foster investment in alternative energy sources.

* Introduce legal rights for same sex couples but is against gay marriage.

Eduardo Frei:

* Continue with President Michelle Bachelet's welfare programs and expand them to include the middle class.

* Introduce labor reform that would create more unions to include millions of workers who do not benefit from collective wage negotiations. 

* Gradually reduce pensioners' public health system contributions from 7 percent.

* Be open to studying alternative energy sources, including nuclear power.

* Make private health providers and pension funds give details on earnings and dividend payments.

* Look at legal rights for same sex couples and open debate on abortion.

Marco Antonio Enriquez-Ominami:

* Raise royalties on copper mining and open debate on raising them for other sectors like salmon and forestry.

* Raise taxes on companies, alcohol, tobacco and lower the upper limit on individuals' income tax to 30 percent.

* Create a state pension fund system.

* Increase state's role in transport, health, housing, education and social security and raise government spending on infrastructure and public works projects.

* Revise rule keeping structural fiscal surplus at 0.5 percent of GDP to 0 percent.

* Open around 5 percent of state copper giant Codelco to workers and/or an eventual state pension fund.

* Regulate digital television services.

* Legalize gay marriage and marijuana.

* Change system of government to Westminster style hybrid, to include president and prime minister.

(Reporting by Simon Gardner and Rodrigo Martinez; Editing by Phil Stewart)

Reuters (Estados Unidos)

 


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Center for the Study of the Presidency
Freedom House