Sebastian Pinera sworn in as Chile’s president

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Valparaiso, March 12 (IANS) Businessman-turned politician Sebastian Pinera was sworn in as Chile’s president on Sunday, beginning what will be his second term in office after a four-year absence.

At a brief ceremony before members of the national congress gathered in the central port city of Valparaiso, Pinera received the presidential sash from outgoing center-left President Michelle Bachelet for the second time, since she had turned over the reins to Pinera in 2010. Since 2006, the two have alternated in office.

Pinera, 68, was re-elected in last November elections, promising to lower taxes and boost investment, and will serve until 2022, Xinhua reported.

According to Forbes magazine, Pinera is the fourth wealthiest man in Chile, with an estimated fortune of $2.8 billion.

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Following the ceremony, Bachelet and her cabinet left the venue to rounds of applause. Neither Bachelet nor Pinera made a speech.

–IANS

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