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Home / World / The business-friendly Colorado Party in Paraguay retains the presidency

The business-friendly Colorado Party in Paraguay retains the presidency



By Daniela Desantis and Mariel Cristaldo

ASUNCION (Reuters) ̵

1; Candidate of the governing Colorado party in Paraguay won the presidential election on Sunday, with 96 percent of the votes cast, which speaks for another five years of pro-business politics

The country's electoral authority said Mario Abdo, a 46-year-old former senator who fought on an anticorruption platform, had an "irreversible" advantage over his main rival, Efrain Alegre, a lawyer, from the center-left GANAR coalition

"My government will seek to win the trust of those who have not accompanied us," Abdo said in his acceptance speech.

Abdo had 46.49 percent of the votes to Alegre's 42.72 percent, said the chairman of the Paraguayan electoral court, Jaime Bestard, on television. "The elected president of Paraguay is Mario Abdo," said Bestard.

Abdo supports current low tax policy, which aims to promote foreign investment and agricultural production in the world's largest soybean exporter and to be an important supplier of beef [19659007] The lead in the victory was much narrower than the pre-election opinion polls showed what gave Abdo an electoral intent advantage of 18 to 20 points. Alegre said he will not give up the race until all ballots have been counted and confirmed.

Abdo set the stage for governing a minority in Congress by calling for a dialogue with opposition parties. He has promised to curb the pressure to increase taxes despite demands from the opposition for a levy on soybean exports.

Outgoing President Horacio Cartes, who sought to change the constitution to obtain a second term, won a Senate seat vote on Sunday

Abdo is the son of the late private secretary of dictator Alfredo Stroessner, who paraguay for 35 years ruled with an iron hand. Abdo was 16 when Stroessner's reign ended in 1989.

Earlier on Sunday, Abdo visited his father's grave, as he did on the day of the first election in December, when he won the nomination of the Colorado party.

Abdo's conservative policies and family history were a problem for some voters who had doubts about his commitment to cleanse the government.

"This is a land of corruption and until we stop, we will not move forward Mario Abdo is a son of the dictatorship and I do not think he will govern well," said Edgar Gonzalez, 45, on his Away from his high school elective station in the upper middle class of Trinidad in Asunción.

Abdo's father was also called Mario and gave his son, as he is popularly known, the nickname "Marito" or "Little Mario".

About 4.2 million Paraguayans were eligible to vote for the election, for which all seats in Congress were foreseen. The new president will take office on 15 August. The election results of the congress will be announced in the coming days.

Soybeans Debate

Cereal-dependent Paraguay produced more than 10 million tons of soy last year and is trying to attract investment that will reach 20 million tons by 2028.

Abdo's party went to the polls with 20 seats in Paraguay's 45-member Senate, which last year debated a bill on a 10 percent tax on soybean exports.

"The urge for an export tax will increase after the elections, which is likely to see the empowerment of Frente Guasu, a main proponent of the initiative, and a party that is expected to significantly increase its presence in Congress . " said Thomaz Favaro, an analyst for the consulting firm Control Risks.

Abdo may need to support the export tax to cover other parts of his investment-friendly agenda.

"Uncertainty about the level of taxation on agriculture is therefore likely to persist in the short to medium term," Favaro said.

(Report by Daniela Desantis and Mariel Cristaldo, Writing and Additional Reporting by Hugh Bronstein, Edited by James Dalgleish, Peter Cooney and Cynthia Osterman)


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