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With more than 97% of the tables counted, the candidate of the PAC, Carlos Alvarado Quesada, received more than 60.5% of the votes

Costa Rica: Who won the presidency?

Leer en español: Costa Rica: ¿Quién ganó la presidencia?

The center-left candidate and member of the Citizen Action Party (PAC), Carlos Alvarado Quesada, won the presidential elections in Costa Rica on Sunday, April 1. In the second round, Alvarado won with the support of 60.67 percent of the voters, counted 97.13 percent of the polling stations.

According to official information from the Supreme Electoral Tribunal of the Central American country, the conservative candidate of the National Restoration Party, Fabricio Alvarado, obtained 39.33 percent of the votes. Fabricio Alvarado acknowledged his defeat and offered to work with the president-elect to take the country out of the deep crisis it is in. "I called him on the phone immediately and told him that he can count on us to walk the things that are stuck in this country. I send my respect to Don Carlos" said Alvarado in his defeat speech.

Luis Antonio Sobrado, president of the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE) of Costa Rica, when giving a first bulletin of the results of the elections, only two and a half hours after the closing of the electoral centers, affirmed that Alvarado Quesada was imposed on Pastor Alvarado with a wide margin of difference.

With more than 90% of the voting tables counted, Sobrado announced the winner of the electoral contest. Sobrado also congratulated the Costa Rican people for the high turnout in the voting despite being the Sunday of resurrection and last day of Easter holidays.

The new president of Costa Rica is a center-left journalist, writer, political, and scientist. Alvarado Quesada issued a speech during his campaign respecting the rights of all people and forming a unity government to overcome problems such as fiscal deficit, poverty, and infrastructure. Among Alvarado's plans, the following proposals can be highlighted:

  • Transform the sales tax by a Value Added Tax (VAT). Leaving the rate at 13%.
  • Make the intervention of the Central Bank more transparent, the exchange rate is more volatile and interest rates fall especially for entrepreneurs, SMEs and companies in the social economy.
  • Simplify procedures, strengthen public education, encourage technology, and build trust as keys for more foreign companies to be interested in the country.
  • Implement a National Employment System that links people who are looking for work in relation to the needs of the private sector.
  • Update the master plans of ports and airports as established in the National Transportation Plan 2011-2035.
  • To build an interurban electric train for the mobilization of passengers through a viaduct to connect Alajuela, Heredia, San José, and Cartago, main urban centers of the country.
  • Create the National Commission for Science, Technology and Innovation, in order to implement a program of support for early undertakings that are innovative through a strategy to support innovation.

However, Carlos Alvarado to push his agenda will have to deal with a fragmented Legislative Assembly, where his party (PAC) is the third political force - behind the National Liberation Party (PLN) and National Restoration (PRN) - placing it far from the majority he needs to positively insure his plans.

The president-elect was Minister of Human Development and Labor during the current government of President Luis Guillermo Solís. From next May 8, Alvarado Quesada will become the second president in the history of the PAC and one of the youngest presidents of the region.


Latin American Post | Carlos Eduardo Gómez Avella
Translated from “ Costa Rica: ¿Quién ganó la presidencia?”

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