José María Figueres, the man many see as the country’s next president, met Thursday with Luis Guillermo Solís and later said that the uncertain fiscal situation cannot be resolved just with more taxes.
The 60-year-old Figueres left office in 1998 and held high-profile international positions since. He now is the president of the Partido Liberación Nacional. He is the son of the legendary José Figueres Ferrer, the winner of the 1948 civil war.
The party said that Figueres presented Solís, the current president, with a document outlining a series of suggested actions to solve the country’s financial crisis. The description seemed very much like a platform for the 2018 elections.
The pair also discussed politics relating to the May election of the legislative hierarchy. They met behind closed doors, but both made comments afterwards.
Figueres said that the fiscal problem was political and not economic, according to a summary provided by Liberación.
He said that the contract between the state and the citizenry had been broken.
He said his party would work over the next months to develop the proposals that he had presented.
Among them is the pledge to generate 500,000 quality jobs over the next 10 years.
He said his party seeks to establish conditions to raise economic growth to 8 percent a year while reducing unemployment to 4 percent. Unemployment now is about 10 percent, although the statistics are clouded by thousands of jobs that are off the books.
The proposal also calls for eliminating favoritism and fiscal irresponsibility and the end to obstacles that prevent the efficient operation of the state. He also said that Liberación seeks to line up the tax structure with the objectives of society.
Liberación has held the presidency for eight of the last nine years, and also has held periodically a controlling majority in the legislature. Many citizens voted for Solís with the idea that he would clean house.