After the recession of the early 1980s, Büchi's appointment as Finance Minister in 1985:
...marked the beginning of economic recovery. Büchi's strategy was to create the financial conditions for stable, export-led growth and to reorganize the productive structures of the export sector. Control of public spending, periodic devaluations, and incentives for domestic savings, foreign investment and the repatriation of capital gradually brought inflation down to 12 per cent by 1989, the lowest rate in Latin America. A vigorous campaign to sell parcels of the public debt to private investors in exchange for shares in Chilean industries reduced the nation's debt burden by over $4 billion...Economic growth averaged between 5 per cent and 6 per cent in 1985-8, the highest rate in the region.
In the 1989 Chilean presidential election Büchi stood for the centre-right Democracy and Progress Party. Büchi's campaign hired a former public relations adviser to former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, Timothy Bell. Büchi came second with 2,051,975 votes (29.40%). However he "received more support from women than men in 59 of the 60 electoral districts, the exception being in southernmost district of Magallanes, where his support was about equal between the sexes".
In 1996, he wrote a book detailing his experience as Minister of the Treasury of Chile during 1985-1989, called The Economic Transformation of Chile: A Personal Account, where he discusses in step-by-step detail the entire liberalization process of the Chilean economy, and the role he played in it. It was translated into English in 2009.
- Edwin Williamson, The Penguin History of Latin America (Penguin Books, 1992), pp. 508-9.
- Andy Beckett, Pinochet in Piccadilly. Britain and Chile's Hidden History (Faber and Faber, 2002), p. 217.
- Paul H. Lewis, 'The 'Gender Gap' in Chile', Journal of Latin American Studies (2004), 36: 719-742.
Media related to Hernán Büchi at Wikimedia Commons
Luis Escobar Cerda
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Enrique Seguel Morel