IDB approves US$400 million loan for public transportation system in Santiago, Chile

Abril 25, 2008

Ensures continuity of services used by more than 5 million passengers a day

The Inter-American Development Bank today announced the approval of a US$400 million loan to provide financial support to Transantiago, the public transportation system of Santiago, Chile.

The resources from this non-sovereign guarantee loan will be managed by Transantiago Financial Administrator (AFT), the private sector entity responsible for the public transportation system’s payments and collections.

The IDB loan will also support Chile’s comprehensive plan to improve the operation and quality of Transantiago’s bus and subway services, which are used by some 5.4 million passengers a day.

The Chilean government plans to send Congress a bill on a subsidy for Transantiago, seeking to ensure the public transportation system’s long-term financial equilibrium. Transantiago’s operation costs total about U$1.3 billion a year.

On presenting the loan to the Board of Executive Directors, President Luis Alberto Moreno said it allows the IDB to stand behind a project that is a top priority for Chile.

“We all know that Transantiago, a singularly ambitious project, has had difficulties in its implementation. However, this situation is being turned around thanks to the commitment and the efforts of the Chilean government, private sector operators and the public,” Moreno said.

The IDB is also preparing a US$10 million loan for a program led by Chile’s Ministry of Transportation and Telecommunications to establish the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which will monitor Transantiago’s services. The program will also support the financial and economic analyses of public transportation systems in other Chilean cities.

Transantiago Chile · Publicación: English Information 

Popularity of Bachelet: Fallen at Lowest Point

Septiembre 4, 2007

The popularity of Chile President: Michelle Bachelet has fallen to its lowest point since she took the place 18 months ago, weighed down by criticisms of the country’s revamped public transport system… a poll showed on Monday. Bachelet’s approval rating fell to 39.1%, breaking through the 60% mark for the first time since she assumed the presidency in March 2006, according to a monthly survey by pollster Adimark.

Results of August Report:

The poll, conducted in August, interviewed 1,013 people and had a margin of error of plus or minus three percentage points. Bachelet, a socialist who is Chile’s first female president, enjoyed popularity ratings of 49 percent in March after her first year in power. But she has been challenged on how to manage a booming economy helped by high prices for copper, Chile’s top export, amid calls by Chileans for the country’s new wealth to be fairly distributed. Since coming to office, Bachelet has faced massive student protests calling for increased funding in public education and a monthlong protest in July by subcontract workers demanding higher wages at state copper miner Codelco.

Bachelet’s approval rating was hardest hit by continued problems with the Transantiago public transit system in the capital, home to about one-third of Chile’s population. The system was redesigned in February and has suffered from congestion and delays ever since.

Transantiago Chile · Publicación: English Information 

Santander Santiago signs with Wincor Nixdorf for ATMs

Julio 31, 2007

31 Jul 2007 Paderborn, Germany — Banco Santander Santiago (Chile), one of Latin America’s largest financial institutions, has signed an ATM deal with Wincor Nixdorf International for 320 terminals with application software.

According to a news release, the order takes Banco’s installed base of Wincor Nixdorf ATMs to more than 1,100 machines. The rollout is expected to be completed by the end of the year.

Banco Santander Santiago says it expects to use more self-service within its branches to reduce the number of cash transactions that take place at teller windows. And, all of the ATMs being supplied by Wincor Nixdorf are equipped with contactless card readers. Users of public transportation can now load their “transantiago” cards at the bank’s ATMs. The cards can be used to pay for subway and bus travel.

Transantiago Chile · Publicación: Noticias, English Information 

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