San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Facing abysmal approval ratings, Chinchilla administration to spend more on advertising

The government this year will spend ₡1 billion ($2 million) to improve the image of President Laura Chinchilla, the least popular president in the Americas. That figure is almost 50 percent more than officials spent last year.

The new budget includes hiring public relations firm Eureka, which will be responsible for preparing speeches for the president. The government will pay the PR agency ₡10 million ($20,000) to write 10 speeches for Chinchilla, Communications Minister Francisco Chacón said.

Also, the research firm Demoscopia will receive some ₡50 million ($100,000) for conducting four opinion polls.

Chacón said the services are funded with a donation from the Central American Bank for Economic Integration. “The government needs to improve the way we transmit messages to the people,” he said.

This week, Mexican consulting firm Consulta Mitofsky released a study that places Chinchilla – for a second year in a row – at the bottom of a list that compiles approval ratings obtained by presidents across the Americas.

Costa Rica’s president scored less than 10 percent approval, while Ecuador’s Rafael Correa tops the list with 90 percent positive opinions.

Contact L. Arias at

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