Chile flag Chile: Economic and Political Overview

The political framework of Chile

Political Outline

Current Political Leaders
President: President : Gabriel BORIC (since March 11th, 2022). President-elect: Gabriel BORIC (assuming office: March 11th, 2022). The president is both chief of state and head of government. There is no de facto vice president. In case the president is unable to perform his duties, his powers are temporarily transferred to the Minister of the Interior, who is then designated as acting president.
Next Election Dates
General elections (National Congress and President): November 2025
Current Political Context
Since taking office in 2018, Sebastian Piñera has taken numerous initiatives and reforms, which are still to be implemented. In May 2021, Chileans went to the ballot boxes to choose the 155 members of the convention intended to draw up the new constitution to replace the country's current military dictatorship-era constitution. The outcome of the referendum, however, was considered a defeat by the ruling Piñera government, which expected to garner at least one third of the votes in order to avoid disruptive changes to the current constitution, but reached only 24% of seats. Independent candidates were the major winners, obtaining 42% of seats. Moreover, in November 2021, the country held presidential elections and the left-wing candidate, Gabriel Boric, became the youngest president ever elected in Chile, at 35 years old, as well as the one elected with the highest number of votes in Chilean history. In 2022, the draft of the new constitution will be put to a national vote, where the population will determine whether to accept it or not. The new constitution is expected to revision the economic and social model that had been imposed on the country by Augusto Pinochet in 1980, as well as address the current political structure, the provision of social goods and environmental protection.
Main Political Parties
Chilean political forces are divided between left, centre-left and centre-right coalitions. After the 2021 general elections, centre-right coalition "Chile Podemos Más" kept their position as the largest bloc in both chambers, followed by the new left-wing coalition "Apruebo Dignidad" (the second largest bloc in the Chamber of Deputies), and centre-left New Social Pact (which is the second largest bloc in the Senate).

Chile Podemos Más (Chile, we can (do) more; former Chile Vamos!) is the current governing centre-right coalition, composed of the following parties:
- Independent Democratic Union (UDI): right-wing, conservative, liberal, Catholic
- Political Evolution (Evópoli): centre-right, liberal, conservative
- National Renewal (RN): centre-right, conservative
- Democratic Independent Regionalist Party (PRI): centre to centre-right, regionalist

Apruebo Dignidad (Approve Dignity) is a left coalition including:
- Humanist Action (Partido Humanista): left-wing, libertarian socialist, environmentalist
- Democratic Revolution (Revolución Democrática): centre-left to left-wing, democratic socialist
- Social Green Regionalist Federation (Federación Regionalista Verde Social): centre left to left-wing, green politics, sustainability
- Communist Party of Chile (Partido Comunista de Chile): left-wing, communist, Marxist–Leninist
- Christian Left of Chile (Izquierda Cristiana de Chile): left-wing, Christian left, Christian socialist             
- Social Convergence (Convergencia Social): left-wing, libertarian socialist, anti-neoliberalist
- Commons (Comunes): left-wing, autonomist, feminist

New Social Pact (Nuevo Pacto Social) is a centre to centre-left coalition which includes:
- Socialist Party (Partido Socialista de Chile): centre-left, social democratic, progressist
- Party for Democracy (Partido por la Democracia): centre-left, traditions of democratic socialism and liberal progressiveness
- Christian Democratic Party (Partido Demócrata Cristiano): centre, self-declared to bridge communism and capitalism
- Citizens (Ciudadanos): centre to centre-left, social liberalist, progressist, reformist
- Radical Party of Chile (Partido Radical): centre/centre-left; member of Socialist International movement

Executive Power
The President is both the Chief of State and Head of Government, and holds the executive power. The President appoints the Cabinet and has the authority to remove the Commanders-in-Chief of the Armed Forces. He or She is elected by popular vote for a single four-year term and is not eligible for a consecutive re-election.
Legislative Power
The legislature is bicameral. The Parliament (or National Congress) consists of a Senate (the upper house) with its 43 members elected by popular vote to serve eight-year terms (with half of the membership elected alternatively every four years), and the Chamber of Deputies (the lower house) with its 155 members elected by popular vote to serve for four years. Elections follow the Hondt method (proportional representation). The citizens of Chile enjoy considerable political rights.
 

Indicator of Freedom of the Press

Definition:

The world rankings, published annually, measures violations of press freedom worldwide. It reflects the degree of freedom enjoyed by journalists, the media and digital citizens of each country and the means used by states to respect and uphold this freedom. Finally, a note and a position are assigned to each country. To compile this index, Reporters Without Borders (RWB) prepared a questionnaire incorporating the main criteria (44 in total) to assess the situation of press freedom in a given country. This questionnaire was sent to partner organisations,150 RWB correspondents, journalists, researchers, jurists and human rights activists. It includes every kind of direct attacks against journalists and digital citizens (murders, imprisonment, assault, threats, etc.) or against the media (censorship, confiscation, searches and harassment etc.).

World Rank:
54/180
 

Indicator of Political Freedom

Definition:

The Indicator of Political Freedom provides an annual evaluation of the state of freedom in a country as experienced by individuals. The survey measures freedom according to two broad categories: political rights and civil liberties. The ratings process is based on a checklist of 10 political rights questions (on Electoral Process, Political Pluralism and Participation, Functioning of Government) and 15 civil liberties questions (on Freedom of Expression, Belief, Associational and Organizational Rights, Rule of Law, Personal Autonomy and Individual Rights). Scores are awarded to each of these questions on a scale of 0 to 4, where a score of 0 represents the smallest degree and 4 the greatest degree of rights or liberties present. The total score awarded to the political rights and civil liberties checklist determines the political rights and civil liberties rating. Each rating of 1 through 7, with 1 representing the highest and 7 the lowest level of freedom, corresponds to a range of total scores.

Ranking:
Free
Political Freedom:
1/7

Political freedom in the world (interactive map)
Source: Freedom in the World Report, Freedom House

 

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Latest Update: November 2022