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Volume 461: debated on Wednesday 6 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will make a statement on his recent visit to Chile. [130504]

I visited Chile from 15 to 18 March 2007. While there, I addressed a conference organised by the Policy Network on “Globalisation and the New Welfare Model” alongside the President of Chile, Michelle Bachelet.

I met my Chilean opposite number, Osvaldo Andrade, at which we were joined by our Argentinean counterpart, Carlos Tomada. This meeting provided an opportunity to compare approaches on pensions and labour market reforms.

I also met Paulina Velso, Secretary General to the Presidency of Chile. This meeting provided an opportunity to deepen discussion on social issues initiated by Lord Triesman on his visit to Chile in December 2006.