Following up on our earlier post, and according to an article by EMOL, Rodrigo Hinzpeter, the Minister of the Interior, announced today that the Chilean Government will invest US$ 270 million in Easter Island — which is 20 times more than what the Government’s budget has been for the Island over the past 15 years. The Government also announced that additional efforts will be made to improve Easter Island’s representation within the Chilean system.
In making the announcement, Hinzpeter noted that the Chilean people have an outstanding debt to its Indigenous peoples, and that all honorable people and nations should honor their debts and their commitments. He went on to point out that there is nothing, however, that the Government or any committee or working group could ever do to replace the dedication of those living on the Island and all they have done to protect and preserve Easter Island for everyone.
Although the entire plan presented by the Government has not been published, some aspects of the plan include:
- A law that will allow for Easter Island to restrict migration to the Island;
- Continued review and discussion over land claims;
- The possibility of a new government on the Island, which would include greater autonomy and incorporate aspects of Rapa Nui culture;
- The ability of the Island to exercise more control over its own budget;
- A representative from the Island to the President; and
- Strengthening of the Rapa Nui language immersion program.
We will continue to post about this topic as more details about the Government’s plan become available.