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Dr. Leonel Antonio Fernández Reyna (born 26 December 1953) is a politician from the Dominican Republic. He was born in Santo Domingo but spent his childhood and formative years in New York City, USA.

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Leonel Fernández Reyna at the UN

He joined the PLD (see further below) since its inception in the early seventies, when the late Juan Bosch left the PRD party to create the new party. Fernández was a close pupil of Bosch, and was presented as a vice-president candidate with the latter during the 1994 presidential elections.

He served a four-year term as president between 1996 and 2000. In the first-round election on 16 May 1996 he polled 38.9% and was placed second behind José Francisco Peña Gómez of the left-leaning Dominican Revolutionary Party (PRD). In the second round on 30 June, however, he secured 51.2%. He was subsequently sworn in as president on 16 August, succeeding incumbent president President Joaquín Balaguer of the Christian Democratic PRSC.

During his term in office, Fernández's political agenda was one of economic and judicial reform. He helped enhance Dominican participation in hemispheric forums, such as the Organization of American States and the Miami Summit follow-up mechanism. During Fernández's first term, the Dominican economy enjoyed an average growth rate of seven per cent, the highest growth rate in that period, along with countries like South Korea. Inflation was stabilised in the low single digits, the lowest in all of Latin America.

At the end of his mandate, he was succeeded by Hipólito Mejía of the PRD.

After a four-year hiatus, he was elected to a second term of office in the presidential election held on 16 May 2004 with absolute majority, representing the Dominican Liberation Party (PLD), greatly due to the precarious situation the country was in because of the poor judgement, administration and corruption of the PRD mandate. He was sworn in on 16 August 2004.

Fernández is the author of several books whose topics include politics and economics.de:Leonel Fernández Reyna es:Leonel Fernández fr:Leonel Fernández gl:Leonel Fernández no:Leonel Fernández

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