December 18, 2009 12:47
Chile is to become the 31st member of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). The OECD in a special board meeting at headquarters in Paris on Tuesday unanimously agreed to invite Chile to join, according to AP.
Chilean President Michelle Bachelet and OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurria will officially sign Chile's entry on Jan. 11, and when lawmakers in the South American country ratify the move and submit a formal application, inclusion into the rich nations' club will be complete.
Chile is the first South American country to be admitted.
The Washington Post on Thursday said Chile's entry is due to its rapid economic growth over the past 10 years -- the fastest among South American countries -- which lowered its poverty rate from 45 percent during the Pinochet dictatorship (1974-1990) to 14 percent. "Such a transition from developing to developed country last happened more than a generation ago -- think Ireland and South Korea," the paper said.
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