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Minister Garamendi travelled to Chile to convey the Basque model of decentralization, self-government and transparency to the authorities of the South American country

2023 October 2
  • Minister Garamendi holds various meetings with local authorities at different levels and will participate in congresses and conferences
  • On the first day, Garamendi took part in a seminar organized by the Transparency Council of Chile

During this week, the Minister for Public Governance and Self-Governance, Olatz Garamendi, is holding meetings with different Chilean authorities and institutional representatives to address issues such as self-government, decentralization and transparency. This trip is part of the Basque Government's internationalization agenda, which aims to strengthen relations between Chile and the Basque Country and promote the Euskadi Basque Country brand.

Today, the first of an extensive agenda of activities and meetings, Garamendi held a meeting with the President of the Council for Transparency, Francisco Leturia, and the Director General of the same body, David Ibaceta. The Council for Transparency (CPLT) is an autonomous organisation under public law, in force since 2009. It has become a fundamental body for the development of democracy in Chile, since its work over the years has contributed to ensure that citizens have access to the information necessary to exercise their rights, good governance and control the functioning of the Public Administration.

After the meeting, Garamendi emphasised that “Chile is a country with years of experience in this area and sharing its knowledge with ours has been very productive for the interests of both”.

This is not the first meeting on this matter between Chile and the Basque Country. In 2021 CPLT minister Bernardo Navarrete visited the Basque Country to learn about the work developed by the Basque Government in transparency, participation, control mechanisms and open data and data protection. On this occasion, the local authorities showed great interest in the structuring of information on the Irekia and Gardena websites 

The Minister then took part in the Seminar “The experience of the CPLT in the promotion of transparency and access to information” organised by the CPLT where she emphasised that “transparency is a principle referring to the opening and material disclosure of what is done and happens within the public administration”. Garamendi recalled that “we are facing a new culture in which citizens go from just proposing to co-governing, so the Basque Government is on the verge of presenting an initiative to approve the Basque Transparency Law with which to develop and deepen our policies in this area. At present, these are already showing good references based on the citizens’ perception”.

In the coming days, the Basque delegation, made up of the Minister for Public Governance and Self-Government, Olatz Garamendi; the Deputy Minister for the Legal System, Sabino Torre, and the Cabinet Director, Ugaitz Zabala, will have the opportunity to learn about experiences in territorial decentralisation and the transfer of powers to regional and local governments, at a time when Chile is embarking on a decentralisation process, and to share the basic foundations of Basque self-government, as well as the State's decentralisation model. She will also visit the Euzko Etxea in Santiago where she will have the opportunity to spend time with the Basque community in Chile and will hold a meeting with representatives of the Euskal Etxeak (Basque houses) of the country.

Chile, a country with which the Basque Government maintains an intense relationship at the institutional, economic-commercial and academic levels, in which the Basque diaspora has a strong presence, is identified as a priority country in the Euskadi Basque Country 2025 Internationalisation Framework Strategy. For this reason, the visit aims to underpin existing relations and strengthen ties between the two countries.

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Politicians attending the event