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CHILE: Ballot Casts Doubt On The Strength Of The Next President - Moody's

(Agencia CMA Latam) - Former Chilean president and center-right candidate Sebastián Piñera had a lower than expected performance in Sunday's presidential polls, but still obtained the highest number of votes in the first voting round. Meanwhile, left-wing candidates won a higher proportion of the votes than expected. As a result, Chilean voters will choose between Piñera and the current ruling coalition candidate Alejandro Guillier on December 17.

The results suggest that the outcome of the second round would be too close to call and the next president is likely to lack a strong mandate to push for an aggressive political agenda, assessed the rating agency Moody's Investors Service.

"The second round is likely to be a tight race and the winner, therefore, will lack a strong mandate," Moody's said.

According to the agency, a high turnover in the second round would probably favor Guiller.

Meanwhile, the results of the legislative elections, which also took place on Sunday, show a fragmented Congress and a greater participation of small leftist parties, implying that the next president would have to engage with the opposition to push forward his political agenda, a condition that can complicate reforms.

by Agencia CMA Latam

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