New president in Paraguay: No shift to the left

Präsident Santiago Pena

In Paraguay, a new president was elected on April 30th. A new parliament, senate and state governors were also elected. Before the elections, there was great hope among leftist politicians in Paraguay, Europe and the United States that the left would score a great victory. However, voters in Paraguay had other plans, and the result was remarkable.

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Santiago Peña of the Colorado party is the new president

With 42.74% of the votes, economist and former finance minister Santiago Peña won the elections. Second place went to Efrain Alegre of the leftist alliance bloc “La Concertacion” with 27.5%, ahead of populist Payo Cubas with 22.91% and USA-Paraguay dual citizenship.

A complete victory for the conservatives in Paraguay

In addition to the president, a new parliament and senate were elected on the same day. The Colorado Party won the majority in the Parliament and likewise (for the first time in many years) the majority in the Senate.

As if that were not enough, a Colorado Party governor also won in 15 of the 17 states/departamentos.

Where does the Colorado Party come from?

The Colorado Party is closely linked to Paraguay’s history. During the Chaco War against Bolivia from 1932 to 1935, the party served as an important tool to mobilize the population and support the war effort. In the decades following victory in the Chaco War, it achieved political dominance, especially in the regime of General and later President Alfredo Stroessner from 1954 – 1989.

After long-term president Alfredo Stroessner left the political stage the Colorado Party has continued to dominate the Paraguayan political scene. In the 8th presidential election since 1989, the Colorado Party candidate was elected for the 7th time.

What does the Colorado Party stand for?

The Colorado Party in Paraguay is generally considered a conservative party. It has always maintained close ties with the Catholic Church and traditionally conservative farmers and entrepreneurs. More recently, the party has made an effort to present itself as a more modern, democratic party and has facilitated many investments in the country and specifically in infrastructure in Paraguay.

What does the Conservatives’ electoral victory mean in Paraguay?

The Colorado Party’s election victory should keep Paraguay a stable country with a strong currency for another five years. Paraguay will probably be spared the usual problems of left-leaning states, such as Argentina with around 100% inflation per year, for the next few years.

Besides the political stability, the national currency “Guaranies” is also the most stable currency in South America. Thus, Paraguay remains a good country for emigrants and especially for investors. With an expected inflation of around 4.5% for the year 2023 and an economic growth of also around 4.5% (source: BCP – Central Bank), good returns are practically guaranteed.

You can find more information about solid investments and current interest rates in Paraguay in the book “Investors Guide Paraguay“.

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