MAY 14, 2024

President participates in 2024 Annual Construction Meeting

The president highlighted the government’s commitment to growth, as well as incentives for construction and housing. 

President Gabriel Boric participated in the 2024 Annual Construction Meeting, organized by the Chilean Chamber of Construction. At the event, the president highlighted the government’s commitment to growth, a better distribution of resources and incentives for construction and housing. 

The president emphasized that there is a common vision between the construction sector and the government itself regarding the importance of public-private collaboration to make progress in Chile. 

Along these lines, the president stressed that hard work is currently being undertaken on important projects such as desalination plants, hospitals, wind farms, transmission lines, urban parks, roads and trains, in addition to specific projects like the International Antarctic Center (CAI) in Punta Arenas. 

“We are very focused on green hydrogen in Magallanes and Antofagasta; we are making very firm progress there. In fact, we are fast tracking maritime concessions, which has been an issue, generating synergy between the different projects, so that we have economies of scale with respect to ports. Isabel Muñoz is the trade association representative in Magallanes in this area, and we are making a lot of progress there, as well as in the Antofagasta Region,” the president indicated. 

President Boric highlighted that these are state projects, a significant majority of which will not be inaugurated by the current government. “It will be up to another government, just as I have inaugurated works of previous governments. The Chironta Reservoir, for example, in the Arica and Parinacota Region, or the progress made on the bridge over the Chacao Canal, which was begun by President Lagos. During our government, we have committed to building the four pillars that will sustain the bridge, but it will be the job of a future government to inaugurate it.”  

“With regard to the conditions for investing, I know very well that the construction sector has taken time to recover, and that this has been going on for a decade. They have been difficult years not only for Chile, but for the world. The pandemic and the war at the gates of Europe have significantly changed trade flows and caused turbulence at a global level. In addition, the social complexities in our country, where disagreements, polarization and the difficulty of reaching agreements have generated uncertainty and stagnation,” Gabriel Boric, President of Chile. 

The importance of development and private support 

President Boric highlighted the work carried out by the government to put the economy in order and stop the inflationary spiral. 

“I want to repeat something that I have said in other forums: the economic leadership of our government has been responsible for normalizing the situation in the country and, together with the work of the Banco Central (Central Bank), has made it possible to redirect the inflationary spiral that in 2022 reached more than 14%. Today, the interannual Consumer Price Index is less than 4%, and we will soon reach the target set by the Banco Central,” he stated. 

“For this year, we estimate that the flow of investments via concessions will be around US$800 million, which is a historic figure that exceeds what has been seen since 2018. For example, one of the most important projects is the start of the process to build the desalination plant in Coquimbo. Here, there has been coordinated work by the Public Works Ministry to prepare a bill that would allow the ministry to develop and manage multipurpose water infrastructure. After rapid consideration in Congress, we have managed to approve the project,” Gabriel Boric, President of Chile. 

At the event, the president called on the Asociación de Bancos (Association of Banks), as well as private banks, to avoid an excessively restrictive view of access to credit. “This actually plays with the quality of its own portfolio, because by cutting off credit to companies that depend a lot on their working capital, the risk of default increases, and construction is the best example of that,” he indicated, giving the example of BancoEstado, which in 2023 expanded the provision of credit, increasing its profits.