Upcoming Events

Ambassador Series: Costa Rica

Date : Feb 06, 2018
Time : 6:00PM To 8:00PM
Place : Hemisphere Suites, Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center 1300 Pennsylvania Ave. NW Washington, DC

6:00pm-6:45pm Reception, 6:45pm-8:00pm Program. This event will be in the HEMISPHERE SUITES.


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On February 6th, 2018, the World Affairs Council-Washington, DC hosted His Excellency Roman Macaya Hayes, Ambassador of Costa Rica to the United States. Ambassador Macaya Hayes discussed Costa Rica as a part of the WAC-DC Ambassador Series.

The event commenced with remarks by WAC-DC International Affairs Director, Ms. Stephanie Fassler, who highlighted Costa Rica from the time of its independence from Spain in 1821 until today, as well as Costa Rica’s relationship with the United States. Ms. Fassler then introduced Amb. Macaya Hayes and Mr. Michael Shifter, the moderator for the event.

Amb. Macaya Hayes opened by discussing the history of Costa Rica and the challenges the country faces moving forward. He noted that Costa Rica is known for its stable democracy, peaceful culture, its educated population, and its conservation efforts. Today, Costa Rica is handling the outcome of the most recent presidential election, which occurred on February 4th, and resulted in a run-off election between two small party candidates. This election is only the third time in modern Costa Rican history where there was a run-off election, and neither candidate is from either of the two dominant political parties. This would indicate that Costa Rica is moving towards a true multi-party system.

Mr. Shifter posed questions related to predictions on the run-off election, the topics that will be addressed by the candidates, and the broader regional politics that may be at play. Amb. Macaya Hayes reminded us that the one thing that has not changed in Costa Rica is the people’s faith in their democratic system and elections. In the Q&A portion of the night, Amb. Macaya Hayes discussed the absence of a military in Costa Rica, and how Costa Rica relies on international law, multi-lateral systems, and international institutions for its defense.

Presented in partnership with:
Ronald Reagan Building - International Trade Center