On Friday, September 25, the President of the Republic, Michelle Bachelet, accompanied by the Foreign Minister, Heraldo Munoz, and the Ambassador of Chile in the United States, Juan Gabriel Valdes, met with the Governor of California, Jerry Brown, at The Westin New York Grand Central Hotel.
As Chile and California share many similarities that make them natural partners for a long term strategic relationship, the Plan Chile-California, whose origins date back to a collaborative program offered by the United States to the countries of Latin America as part of the Alliance for Progress, was signed into action. The program was first promoted by the then Governor Edmund Brown, father of Jerry Brown, in early 1963.
This bilateral cooperation was renewed in June 2008, when President Bachelet and the then Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed the Memorandum of Understanding “Chile – California, A Strategic Partnership for the XXI Century”, to cooperate in areas of mutual interest such as the development of human capital, education, environmental protection, energy, agriculture and technology among others.
The success of this partnership with California was the model for the signing of an MOU between Chile and the State of Massachusetts in 2011. Chile is currently evaluating a proposal by the State of Washington to develop a similar plan for cooperation.