| Mauricio Rojas |
|Born||June 28, 1950|
|Alma mater||Lund University|
Mauricio José Rojas Mullor is a Chilean-Swedish politician and political economist, member of the Riksdag between 2002 and 2006. He attended the 1999 Bilderberg meeting as leader of the neoliberal think tank Timbro.
From March to August 2018, he was a strategic adviser and speechwriter for Chilean President Sebastián Piñera. In August 2018, he was appointed Chile's Minister of Culture for four days, before resigning.
Mauricio Rojas was born in Santiago, Chile. According to his own version, he as an active socialist and member of MIR in his youth, had to escape to Sweden in 1974 following the military coup and the subsequent persecution of leftist activists by the new Pinochet regime.
This claim is denied by the management of MIR who say his claim of membership is a lie, and that the belonged to an unconnected troskist group. In 1974 his mother was arrested because she hid a socialist professor in her house. She was arrested and taken to Villa Grimaldi where she was intensely tortured. Subsequently, she left for Sweden. As a result of her mother's departure from Chile, Rojas also traveled to Sweden later, but he was not persecuted by the dictatorship or a political refugee.
During the first years in Sweden, Rojas resumed its cooperation with MIR and became a member of MIR's support groups.
After living in Sweden for a few years, he eventually changed his political views and began to advocate liberal ideas.
Rojas received a Ph.D. in economic history from Lund University in Sweden in 1986 and became Docent (Associate Professor) of Economic History at Lund University in 1995. Rojas was lecturer at Lund University from 1981 to 1999, when he became the Director of the Centre for Welfare Reform at the Stockholm-based think tank Timbro. Lately he was both Vice President and President of Timbro.
Political work in Sweden
In the 2002 election, he was elected to the Riksdag for the Liberal People's Party as an "independent liberal", without being a member of the party until the summer of 2004. The non-partisan candidacy caused some debate, not least within the People's Party. However, since Rojas has always had the party designation FP and participated fully in the work of the parliamentary group, he was not politically independent in the true sense.
Rojas was the People's Party's spokesman on refugee and integration issues from 2004 to October 2006 and then made several notable statements that made him identified with the so-called 'demanding line' that the People's Party took during the latter part of Lars Leijonborg's leadership and accused of xenophobia, which he denied. He authored various studies of great importance for the Swedish integration debate, such as Utanförskapet's karta in 2004 (also 2005 and 2006), as well as the basis for the party program 2005 in immigrant integration issues.
He was threatened with murder by extremists during the 2006 election campaign, which led to him being protected by Säpo. After the 2006 election, Rojas lost his seat in the Riksdag, but after the Reinfeldt government took office, he returned to the Riksdag after a few days as a replacement for Lars Leijonborg - who became Minister of Education. In the autumn of 2008, Rojas left the Riksdag and Sweden due to the treatment he felt he had experienced in connection with the Swedish political debate.
In a number of books and articles, Rojas has highlighted factors of importance for integration processes. He has also taken an active part in the debate on immigration and integration policy. In addition to research in the field, Rojas has worked with development economics, the welfare state and political philosophical themes.
Rojas has pursued controversial views that have often provoked debate. He advocated that Sweden should increase the number of refugees received and at the same time make clearer demands for compensation for the right to stay in the country, the right to social benefits, child benefits, etc. He proposed (from around the year 2000) a holistic approach to combat immigrant exclusion and crime and pointed to the socio-cultural aspects that may explain the differences in crime rates between different immigrant groups.
Rojas also supported the invasion of Iraq in 2003  and took an active part in the globalization debate, as the initiator of the Motattac Network, which advocated a globalization-friendly attitude.
Since April 2019, he has been a member of the Moderates' Integration Commission.
From March to August 2018, he was a strategic adviser and speechwriter for Chilean President Sebastián Piñera. In August 2018, he was appointed Chile's Minister of Culture for four days before being forced to resign following widespread criticism. The background was that he criticized the Museum of History and Human Rights in Santiago, which documents the crimes committed under the rule of military dictator Augusto Pinochet 1973-1990, and called the museum "a montage […] that falsifies Chilean history". Rojas claimed he was the victim of a defamation campaign. His friend Nobel laureate Mario Vargas Llosa also defended Rojas.
He has written several books in the field of international economics, immigration matters and on the Swedish model, many of them translated into several languages. Available in English are The Rise and Fall of the Swedish Model (London, 1998), Millennium Doom (London, 1999), Beyond the Welfare State (Stockholm, 2001) and The Sorrows of Carmencita: Argentina’s Crisis in a Historical Perspective (Stockholm, 2002). His latest published book is Reinventar el Estado del bienestar (Madrid, 2008).
Event Participated in
|Bilderberg/1999||3 June 1999||6 June 1999||Portugal|
|The 47th Bilderberg, 111 participants|