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SEPT. 21, 2021

President Piñera takes part in the United Nations General Assembly: “What is needed is a serene diagnosis and, above all, wisdom, willpower and courage to adopt the most efficient and urgent actions.”

Via virtual address, the President highlighted Chile’s work in combating the pandemic, as well as the country’s efforts to confront climate change. He also called for the protection and restoration of women’s rights and freedoms in Afghanistan.

This Tuesday, Chile’s President, Sebastián Piñera, participated in the United Nations General Assembly. He talked about the fight against COVID-19 both in Chile and throughout the world, the measures taken to face the economic crisis triggered by the pandemic and the initiatives adopted to confront the global climate crisis. 

Talking about the COVID-19 pandemic, the President called attention to the concerted effort of Chile’s health personnel, who have already inoculated about 90% of the population. He also pointed to the country’s advances in healthcare, such as the integration of the healthcare system, which made it possible to triple the number of ICU beds, and the expansion of the testing and traceability network. 

“We have cooperated during the most critical points in the pandemic, when inputs were scarce, by donating medicines and part of our vaccine stock to help inoculate the medical personnel of other Latin American countries. In the same spirit, along with the World Health Organization and 50 other countries, we are promoting a treaty for preparedness and response to future pandemics. Nobody can guarantee that these pandemics will not happen. However, we must guarantee that when this does happen that we will be better prepared,” President Piñera stated in his virtual address to the UN Assembly. 

The President also discussed the economic effects of the pandemic at the global level, calling attention to the Social Protection Program promoted by the Chilean government that now covers more than three out of four Chileans. He emphasized the importance that the world adopts measures based on serious and responsible macroeconomic, fiscal and monetary policies for citizens and the environment. 

President Piñera reiterated his call to accelerate and increase environmental protection policies. 

“The time for diagnosis is over. Now is the time to act with great determination and a clear sense of urgency. We have a historic responsibility to both present and future generations. We are the last generation who can prevent the current climate crisis becoming an environmental apocalypse,” he stated. 

The President stressed that, although Chile contributes less than 0.25% of the planet’s greenhouse effect emissions, the country is committed to assuming greater responsibilities, as demonstrated by the development of green hydrogen and clean and renewable energies. 

He also addressed the crisis in Afghanistan and the difficult situation that women and girls face under the Taliban regime. 

“Attacks upon women in Afghanistan are attacks against women across the world. And we cannot, the United Nations cannot be aware of this and then sit back and watch, paralyzed by bureaucratic restrictions or political divisions in the Security Council. We must unite to work to protect them and restore women their full freedoms and rights,” President Piñera concluded.