Photos of Chile

Introduction

Background

Prior to the arrival of the Spanish in the 16th century, the Inca ruled northern Chile for nearly a century while an indigenous people, the Mapuche, inhabited central and southern Chile. Although Chile declared its independence in 1810, it did not achieve decisive victory over the Spanish until 1818. In the War of the Pacific (1879-83), Chile defeated Peru and Bolivia to win its present northern regions. In the 1880s, the Chilean central government gained control over the central and southern regions inhabited by the Mapuche. After a series of elected governments, the three-year-old Marxist government of Salvador ALLENDE was overthrown in 1973 by a military coup led by General Augusto PINOCHET, who ruled until a democratically-elected president was inaugurated in 1990. Economic reforms, maintained consistently since the 1980s, contributed to steady growth, reduced poverty rates by over half, and helped secure the country's commitment to democratic and representative government. Chile has increasingly assumed regional and international leadership roles befitting its status as a stable, democratic nation.

Visit the Definitions and Notes page to view a description of each topic.

Geography

Location

Southern South America, bordering the South Pacific Ocean, between Argentina and Peru

Geographic coordinates

30 00 S, 71 00 W

Map references

South America

Area

total: 756,102 sq km

land: 743,812 sq km

water: 12,290 sq km

note: includes Easter Island (Isla de Pascua) and Isla Sala y Gomez

country comparison to the world: 39

Area - comparative

slightly smaller than twice the size of Montana

Land boundaries

total: 7,801 km

border countries (3): Argentina 6691 km, Bolivia 942 km, Peru 168 km

Coastline

6,435 km

Maritime claims

territorial sea: 12 nm

contiguous zone: 24 nm

exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

continental shelf: 200/350 nm

Climate

temperate; desert in north; Mediterranean in central region; cool and damp in south

Terrain

low coastal mountains, fertile central valley, rugged Andes in east

Elevation

mean elevation: 1,871 m

lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m

highest point: Nevado Ojos del Salado 6,893 m (highest volcano in the world)

Natural resources

copper, timber, iron ore, nitrates, precious metals, molybdenum, hydropower

Land use

agricultural land: 21.1% (2018 est.)

arable land: 1.7% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 0.6% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 18.8% (2018 est.)

forest: 21.9% (2018 est.)

other: 57% (2018 est.)

Irrigated land

11,100 sq km (2012)

Total renewable water resources

923.06 billion cubic meters (2017 est.)

Population distribution

90% of the population is located in the middle third of the country around the capital of Santiago; the far north (anchored by the Atacama Desert) and the extreme south are relatively underpopulated

Natural hazards

severe earthquakes; active volcanism; tsunamis

volcanism: significant volcanic activity due to more than three-dozen active volcanoes along the Andes Mountains; Lascar (5,592 m), which last erupted in 2007, is the most active volcano in the northern Chilean Andes; Llaima (3,125 m) in central Chile, which last erupted in 2009, is another of the country's most active; Chaiten's 2008 eruption forced major evacuations; other notable historically active volcanoes include Cerro Hudson, Calbuco, Copahue, Guallatiri, Llullaillaco, Nevados de Chillan, Puyehue, San Pedro, and Villarrica; see note 2 under "Geography - note"

Environment - international agreements

party to: Antarctic-Environmental Protection, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Climate Change-Paris Agreement, Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping-London Convention, Marine Dumping-London Protocol, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note

note 1: the longest north-south trending country in the world, extending across 39 degrees of latitude; strategic location relative to sea lanes between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans (Strait of Magellan, Beagle Channel, Drake Passage)

note 2: Chile is one of the countries along the Ring of Fire, a belt of active volcanoes and earthquake epicenters bordering the Pacific Ocean; up to 90% of the world's earthquakes and some 75% of the world's volcanoes occur within the Ring of Fire

note 3: the Atacama Desert - the driest desert in the world - spreads across the northern part of the country; Ojos del Salado (6,893 m) in the Atacama Desert is the highest active volcano in the world, Chile's tallest mountain, and the second highest in the Western Hemisphere and the Southern Hemisphere - its small crater lake (at 6,390 m) is the world's highest lake

People and Society

Nationality

noun: Chilean(s)

adjective: Chilean

Ethnic groups

White and non-Indigenous 88.9%, Mapuche 9.1%, Aymara 0.7%, other indigenous groups 1% (includes Rapa Nui, Likan Antai, Quechua, Colla, Diaguita, Kawesqar, Yagan or Yamana), unspecified 0.3% (2012 est.)

Languages

Spanish 99.5% (official), English 10.2%, indigenous 1% (includes Mapudungun, Aymara, Quechua, Rapa Nui), other 2.3%, unspecified 0.2% (2012 est.)

note: shares sum to more than 100% because some respondents gave more than one answer on the census

Religions

Roman Catholic 66.7%, Evangelical or Protestant 16.4%, Jehovah's Witness 1%, other 3.4%, none 11.5%, unspecified 1.1% (2012 est.)

Demographic profile

Chile is in the advanced stages of demographic transition and is becoming an aging society - with fertility below replacement level, low mortality rates, and life expectancy on par with developed countries. Nevertheless, with its dependency ratio nearing its low point, Chile could benefit from its favorable age structure. It will need to keep its large working-age population productively employed, while preparing to provide for the needs of its growing proportion of elderly people, especially as women - the traditional caregivers - increasingly enter the workforce. Over the last two decades, Chile has made great strides in reducing its poverty rate, which is now lower than most Latin American countries. However, its severe income inequality ranks as the worst among members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Unequal access to quality education perpetuates this uneven income distribution.

Chile has historically been a country of emigration but has slowly become more attractive to immigrants since transitioning to democracy in 1990 and improving its economic stability (other regional destinations have concurrently experienced deteriorating economic and political conditions). Most of Chile's small but growing foreign-born population consists of transplants from other Latin American countries, especially Peru.

Age structure

0-14 years: 19.79% (male 1,836,240/female 1,763,124)

15-24 years: 13.84% (male 1,283,710/female 1,233,238)

25-54 years: 42.58% (male 3,882,405/female 3,860,700)

55-64 years: 11.98% (male 1,034,049/female 1,145,022)

65 years and over: 11.81% (male 902,392/female 1,245,890) (2020 est.)

Dependency ratios

total dependency ratio: 45.9

youth dependency ratio: 28.1

elderly dependency ratio: 17.9

potential support ratio: 5.6 (2020 est.)

Median age

total: 35.5 years

male: 34.3 years

female: 36.7 years (2020 est.)

country comparison to the world: 83

Birth rate

12.92 births/1,000 population (2021 est.)

country comparison to the world: 140

Death rate

6.47 deaths/1,000 population (2021 est.)

country comparison to the world: 136

Net migration rate

0.33 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2021 est.)

country comparison to the world: 72

Population distribution

90% of the population is located in the middle third of the country around the capital of Santiago; the far north (anchored by the Atacama Desert) and the extreme south are relatively underpopulated

Urbanization

urban population: 87.8% of total population (2021)

rate of urbanization: 0.78% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)

Major urban areas - population

6.812 million SANTIAGO (capital), 992,000 Valparaiso, 892,000 Concepcion (2021)

Sex ratio

at birth: 1.04 male(s)/female

0-14 years: 1.04 male(s)/female

15-24 years: 1.04 male(s)/female

25-54 years: 1.01 male(s)/female

55-64 years: 0.9 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.72 male(s)/female

total population: 0.97 male(s)/female (2020 est.)

Maternal mortality rate

13 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)

country comparison to the world: 138

Infant mortality rate

total: 6.68 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 7.26 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 6.08 deaths/1,000 live births (2021 est.)

country comparison to the world: 166

Life expectancy at birth

total population: 79.57 years

male: 76.55 years

female: 82.71 years (2021 est.)

country comparison to the world: 54

Drinking water source

improved: urban: 100% of population

rural: 100% of population

total: 100% of population

unimproved: urban: 0% of population

rural: 0% of population

total: 0% of population (2017 est.)

Physicians density

2.59 physicians/1,000 population (2018)

Hospital bed density

2.1 beds/1,000 population (2017)

Sanitation facility access

improved: urban: 100% of population

rural: 100% of population

total: 100% of population

unimproved: urban: 0% of population

rural: 0% of population

total: 0% of population (2017 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths

<1000 (2018)

Literacy

definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 96.4%

male: 96.3%

female: 96.3% (2017)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)

total: 17 years

male: 16 years

female: 17 years (2018)

Unemployment, youth ages 15-24

total: 18.1%

male: 16.7%

female: 20.2% (2018 est.)

country comparison to the world: 73

Environment

Environment - current issues

air pollution from industrial and vehicle emissions; water pollution from raw sewage; noise pollution; improper garbage disposal; soil degradation; widespread deforestation and mining threaten the environment; wildlife conservation

Environment - international agreements

party to: Antarctic-Environmental Protection, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Climate Change-Paris Agreement, Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping-London Convention, Marine Dumping-London Protocol, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Air pollutants

particulate matter emissions: 21.03 micrograms per cubic meter (2016 est.)

carbon dioxide emissions: 85.82 megatons (2016 est.)

methane emissions: 15.97 megatons (2020 est.)

Total water withdrawal

municipal: 1.267 billion cubic meters (2017 est.)

industrial: 4.744 billion cubic meters (2017 est.)

agricultural: 29.42 billion cubic meters (2017 est.)

Total renewable water resources

923.06 billion cubic meters (2017 est.)

Climate

temperate; desert in north; Mediterranean in central region; cool and damp in south

Land use

agricultural land: 21.1% (2018 est.)

arable land: 1.7% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 0.6% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 18.8% (2018 est.)

forest: 21.9% (2018 est.)

other: 57% (2018 est.)

Revenue from coal

coal revenues: 0.01% of GDP (2018 est.)

country comparison to the world: 48

Urbanization

urban population: 87.8% of total population (2021)

rate of urbanization: 0.78% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)

Waste and recycling

municipal solid waste generated annually: 6.517 million tons (2009 est.)

municipal solid waste recycled annually: 24,113 tons (2009 est.)

percent of municipal solid waste recycled: 0.4% (2009 est.)

Government

Country name

conventional long form: Republic of Chile

conventional short form: Chile

local long form: Republica de Chile

local short form: Chile

etymology: derivation of the name is unclear, but it may come from the Mapuche word "chilli" meaning "limit of the earth" or from the Quechua "chiri" meaning "cold"

Government type

presidential republic

Capital

name: Santiago; note - Valparaiso is the seat of the national legislature

geographic coordinates: 33 27 S, 70 40 W

time difference: UTC-3 (2 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)

daylight saving time: +1hr, begins second Sunday in August; ends second Sunday in May; note - Punta Arenas observes DST throughout the year

note: Chile has three time zones: the continental portion at UTC-3; the southern Magallanes region, which does not use daylight savings time and remains at UTC-3 for the summer months; and Easter Island at UTC-5

etymology:
Santiago is named after the biblical figure Saint James (ca. A.D. 3-44), patron saint of Spain, but especially revered in Galicia; "Santiago" derives from the local Galician evolution of the Vulgar Latin "Sanctu Iacobu"; Valparaiso derives from the Spanish "Valle Paraiso" meaning "Paradise Valley"


Administrative divisions

16 regions (regiones, singular - region); Aysen, Antofagasta, Araucania, Arica y Parinacota, Atacama, Biobio, Coquimbo, Libertador General Bernardo O'Higgins, Los Lagos, Los Rios, Magallanes y de la Antartica Chilena (Magallanes and Chilean Antarctica), Maule, Nuble, Region Metropolitana (Santiago), Tarapaca, Valparaiso

note: the US does not recognize any claims to Antarctica

Independence

18 September 1810 (from Spain)

National holiday

Independence Day, 18 September (1810)

Constitution

history: many previous; latest adopted 11 September 1980, effective 11 March 1981; a referendum held in late October 2020 approved forming a convention to draft a new constitution

amendments: proposed by members of either house of the National Congress or by the president of the republic; passage requires at least three-fifths majority vote of the membership in both houses and approval by the president; passage of amendments to constitutional articles, such as the republican form of government, basic rights and freedoms, the Constitutional Tribunal, electoral justice, the Council of National Security, or the constitutional amendment process, requires at least two-third majority vote by both houses of Congress and approval by the president; the president can opt to hold a referendum when Congress and the president disagree on an amendment; amended many times, last in 2020

Legal system

civil law system influenced by several West European civil legal systems; judicial review of legislative acts by the Constitutional Tribunal

International law organization participation

has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; accepts ICCt jurisdiction

Citizenship

citizenship by birth: yes

citizenship by descent only: yes

dual citizenship recognized: yes

residency requirement for naturalization: 5 years

Suffrage

18 years of age; universal

Executive branch

chief of state: President Sebastian PINERA Echenique (since 11 March 2018); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government

head of government: President Sebastian PINERA Echenique (since 11 March 2018)

cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president

elections/appointments: president directly elected by absolute majority popular vote in 2 rounds if needed for a single 4-year term; election last held on 19 November 2017 with a runoff held 17 December 2017 (next to be held on 21 November 2021 with runoff if need on 19 December)

election results: Sebastian PINERA Echenique elected president in second round; percent of vote in first round - Sebastian PINERA Echenique (independent) 36.6%; Alejandro GUILLIER (independent) 22.7%; Beatriz SANCHEZ (independent) 20.3%; Jose Antonio KAST (independent) 7.9%; Carolina GOIC (PDC) 5.9%; Marco ENRIQUEZ-OMINAMI (PRO) 5.7%; other 0.9%; percent of vote in second round - Sebastian PINERA Echenique 54.6%, Alejandro GUILLIER 45.4%

Legislative branch

description: bicameral National Congress or Congreso Nacional consists of:
Senate or Senado (43 seats following the 2017 election; to increase to 50 in 2021); members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies by open party-list proportional representation vote to serve 8-year terms with one-half of the membership renewed every 4 years)
Chamber of Deputies or Camara de Diputados (155 seats; members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies by oen party-list proportional representation vote to serve 4-year terms)

elections:
Senate - last held on 19 November 2017 (next to be held on 21 November 2021)
Chamber of Deputies - last held on 19 November 2017 (next to be held on 21 November 2021)

election results:
Senate - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - New Majority Coalition (formerly known as Concertacion) 19 (PDC 6, PS 6, PPD 6, MAS 1), Let's Go Chile Coalition (formerly known as the Coalition for Change and the Alianza coalition) 15 (RN 6, UDI 8, Amplitude Party 1), independent 4; composition - men 33, women 10, percent of women 23.3%
Chamber of Deputies - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - New Majority 68 (PDC 21, PS 16, PPD 14, PC 6, PRSD 6, Citizen Left 1, independent 4), Coalition for Change 47 (UDI 29, RN 14, independent 3, EP 1), Liberal Party 1, independent 4; composition -men 120, women 35, percent of women 22.6%; note - total National Congress percent of women 22.7%

Judicial branch

highest courts: Supreme Court or Corte Suprema (consists of a court president and 20 members or ministros); Constitutional Court (consists of 10 members); Elections Qualifying Court (consists of 5 members)

judge selection and term of office: Supreme Court president and judges (ministers) appointed by the president of the republic and ratified by the Senate from lists of candidates provided by the court itself; judges appointed for life with mandatory retirement at age 70; Constitutional Court members appointed - 3 by the Supreme Court, 3 by the president of the republic, 2 by the Chamber of Deputies, and 2 by the Senate; members serve 9-year terms with partial membership replacement every 3 years (the court reviews constitutionality of legislation); Elections Qualifying Court members appointed by lottery - 1 by the former president or vice president of the Senate and 1 by the former president or vice president of the Chamber of Deputies, 2 by the Supreme Court, and 1 by the Appellate Court of Valparaiso; members appointed for 4-year terms

subordinate courts: Courts of Appeal; oral criminal tribunals; military tribunals; local police courts; specialized tribunals and courts in matters such as family, labor, customs, taxes, and electoral affairs

Political parties and leaders

Amplitude (Amplitud) [Lily PEREZ]
Broad Front Coalition (Frente Amplio) or FA (includes RD, PL, PH, PEV, Igualdad, and Poder) [Beatriz SANCHEZ]
Broad Social Movement of Leftist Citizens (includes former MAS and Izquierda Ciudadana) [Fernando ZAMORANO]
Christian Democratic Party or PDC [Fuad CHAHIN]
Citizen Power (Poder) [Karina OLIVA]
Communist Party of Chile or PC [Guillermo TEILLIER del Valle]
Democratic Revolution or RD [Rodrigo ECHECOPAR]
Equality Party (Igualdad) [Guillermo GONZALEZ]
Green Ecological Party or PEV [Felix GONZALEZ]
Humanist Party or PH [Octavio GONZALEZ]
Independent Democratic Union or UDI [Jacqueline VAN RYSSELBERGHE Herrera])
Independent Regionalist Democratic Party or PRI [Hugo ORTIZ de Filippi]
Let’s Go Chile Coalition (Chile Vamos) [Sebastian PINERA] (includes EVOPOLI, PRI, RN, UDI)
Liberal Party (Partido Liberal de Chile) or PL [Luis Felipe RAMOS]
National Renewal or RN [Mario DESBORDES]
New Majority Coalition (Nueva Mayoria) [Michelle BACHELET] (includes PDC, PC, PPD, PRSD, PS); note - dissolved in March 2018
Party for Democracy or PPD [Heraldo MUNOZ]
Political Evolution or EVOPOLI [Hernan LARRAIN MATTE]
Progressive Party or PRO [Camilo LAGOS]
Radical Social Democratic Party or PRSD [Carlos MALDONADO Curti],
Socialist Party or PS [Alvaro ELIZALDE Soto] (formerly known as Concertacion)

International organization participation

APEC, BIS, CAN (associate), CD, CELAC, FAO, G-15, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), LAES, LAIA, Mercosur (associate), MIGA, MINUSTAH, NAM, OAS, OECD (enhanced engagement), OPANAL, OPCW, Pacific Alliance, PCA, SICA (observer), UN, UNASUR, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNFICYP, UNHCR, UNIDO, Union Latina, UNMOGIP, UNTSO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US

chief of mission: Ambassador Oscar Alfonso Sebastian SILVA Navarro (since 17 September 2018)

chancery: 1732 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20036

telephone: [1] (202) 785-1746

FAX: [1] (202) 887-5579

consulate(s) general: Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, San Francisco

Diplomatic representation from the US

chief of mission: Ambassador (vacant); Charge d'Affaires Richard H. GLENN (since August 2020)

telephone: [56] (2) 2330-3000

embassy: Avenida Andres Bello 2800, Las Condes, Santiago

mailing address: APO AA 34033

FAX: [56] (2) 2330-3710, 2330-3160

Flag description

two equal horizontal bands of white (top) and red; a blue square the same height as the white band at the hoist-side end of the white band; the square bears a white five-pointed star in the center representing a guide to progress and honor; blue symbolizes the sky, white is for the snow-covered Andes, and red represents the blood spilled to achieve independence

note: design influenced by the US flag

National symbol(s)

huemul (mountain deer), Andean condor; national colors: red, white, blue

National anthem

name: "Himno Nacional de Chile" (National Anthem of Chile)

lyrics/music: Eusebio LILLO Robles and Bernardo DE VERA y Pintado/Ramon CARNICER y Battle

note: music adopted 1828, original lyrics adopted 1818, adapted lyrics adopted 1847; under Augusto PINOCHET's military rule, a verse glorifying the army was added; however, as a protest, some citizens refused to sing this verse; it was removed when democracy was restored in 1990

Economy

Economic overview

Chile has a market-oriented economy characterized by a high level of foreign trade and a reputation for strong financial institutions and sound policy that have given it the strongest sovereign bond rating in South America. Exports of goods and services account for approximately one-third of GDP, with commodities making up some 60% of total exports. Copper is Chile’s top export and provides 20% of government revenue.

From 2003 through 2013, real growth averaged almost 5% per year, despite a slight contraction in 2009 that resulted from the global financial crisis. Growth slowed to an estimated 1.4% in 2017. A continued drop in copper prices prompted Chile to experience its third consecutive year of slow growth.

Chile deepened its longstanding commitment to trade liberalization with the signing of a free trade agreement with the US, effective 1 January 2004. Chile has 26 trade agreements covering 60 countries including agreements with the EU, Mercosur, China, India, South Korea, and Mexico. In May 2010, Chile signed the OECD Convention, becoming the first South American country to join the OECD. In October 2015, Chile signed the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement, which was finalized as the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) and signed at a ceremony in Chile in March 2018.

The Chilean Government has generally followed a countercyclical fiscal policy, under which it accumulates surpluses in sovereign wealth funds during periods of high copper prices and economic growth, and generally allows deficit spending only during periods of low copper prices and growth. As of 31 October 2016, those sovereign wealth funds - kept mostly outside the country and separate from Central Bank reserves - amounted to more than $23.5 billion. Chile used these funds to finance fiscal stimulus packages during the 2009 economic downturn.

In 2014, then-President Michelle BACHELET introduced tax reforms aimed at delivering her campaign promise to fight inequality and to provide access to education and health care. The reforms are expected to generate additional tax revenues equal to 3% of Chile’s GDP, mostly by increasing corporate tax rates to OECD averages.

Real GDP growth rate

1.03% (2019 est.)

4% (2018 est.)

1.41% (2017 est.)

country comparison to the world: 171

Inflation rate (consumer prices)

2.2% (2019 est.)

2.7% (2018 est.)

2.1% (2017 est.)

country comparison to the world: 116

Credit ratings

Fitch rating: A- (2020)

Moody's rating: A1 (2018)

Standard & Poors rating: A+ (2017)

Real GDP (purchasing power parity)

$459.134 billion (2019 est.)

$454.344 billion (2018 est.)

$437.082 billion (2017 est.)

note: data are in 2010 dollars

country comparison to the world: 44

GDP (official exchange rate)

$282.655 billion (2019 est.)

Real GDP per capita

$24,226 (2019 est.)

$24,259 (2018 est.)

$23,664 (2017 est.)

note: data are in 2010 dollars

country comparison to the world: 83

Gross national saving

18.9% of GDP (2019 est.)

18.6% of GDP (2018 est.)

18.9% of GDP (2017 est.)

country comparison to the world: 115

GDP - composition, by sector of origin

agriculture: 4.2% (2017 est.)

industry: 32.8% (2017 est.)

services: 63% (2017 est.)

GDP - composition, by end use

household consumption: 62.3% (2017 est.)

government consumption: 14% (2017 est.)

investment in fixed capital: 21.5% (2017 est.)

investment in inventories: 0.5% (2017 est.)

exports of goods and services: 28.7% (2017 est.)

imports of goods and services: -27% (2017 est.)

Ease of Doing Business Index scores

Overall score: 72.6 (2020)

Starting a Business score: 91.4 (2020)

Trading score: 80.6 (2020)

Enforcement score: 64.7 (2020)

Agricultural products

grapes, apples, wheat, sugar beet, milk, potatoes, tomatoes, maize, poultry, pork

Industries

copper, lithium, other minerals, foodstuffs, fish processing, iron and steel, wood and wood products, transport equipment, cement, textiles

Labor force - by occupation

agriculture: 9.2%

industry: 23.7%

services: 67.1% (2013)

Household income or consumption by percentage share

lowest 10%: 1.7%

highest 10%: 41.5% (2013 est.)

Budget

revenues: 57.75 billion (2017 est.)

expenditures: 65.38 billion (2017 est.)

Public debt

23.6% of GDP (2017 est.)

21% of GDP (2016 est.)

country comparison to the world: 182

Fiscal year

calendar year

Current account balance

-$10.933 billion (2019 est.)

-$10.601 billion (2018 est.)

country comparison to the world: 193

Exports

$90.626 billion (2019 est.)

$92.772 billion (2018 est.)

$88.376 billion (2017 est.)

country comparison to the world: 49

Exports - partners

China 32%, United States 14%, Japan 9%, South Korea 7% (2019)

Exports - commodities

copper, wood pulp, fish fillets, pitted fruits, wine (2019)

Imports

$87.505 billion (2019 est.)

$89.578 billion (2018 est.)

$83.01 billion (2017 est.)

country comparison to the world: 51

Imports - partners

China 24%, United States 20%, Brazil 8%, Germany 5%, Argentina 5% (2019)

Imports - commodities

refined petroleum, crude petroleum, cars, broadcasting equipment, delivery trucks (2019)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

$38.98 billion (31 December 2017 est.)

$40.49 billion (31 December 2016 est.)

country comparison to the world: 44

Debt - external

$193.298 billion (2019 est.)

$181.089 billion (2018 est.)

country comparison to the world: 39

Exchange rates

Chilean pesos (CLP) per US dollar -

738.81 (2020 est.)

770.705 (2019 est.)

674.25 (2018 est.)

658.93 (2014 est.)

570.37 (2013 est.)

Energy

Electricity access

electrification - total population: 100% (2020)

Communications

Telephones - fixed lines

total subscriptions: 2,620,195

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 14.51 (2019 est.)

country comparison to the world: 48

Telephones - mobile cellular

total subscriptions: 23,870,679

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 132.19 (2019 est.)

country comparison to the world: 52

Telecommunication systems

general assessment: most advanced telecommunications infrastructure in South America; although Chile has one of the highest mobile penetration rates in the region, the number of subscribers has fallen due to subscribers ending multiple SIM card use; the country ranks second highest in South and Central America in terms of available broadband speeds; effective competition in the broadband and mobile sectors; LTE infrastructure is extensive but national plan for 5G services awaits spectrum auctions; during the COVID-19 pandemic Chile provided free access to educational content for about 3 million school pupils (2020)

domestic: number of fixed-line connections have stagnated to 15 per 100 in recent years as mobile-cellular usage continues to increase, reaching 132 telephones per 100 persons; domestic satellite system with 3 earth stations (2019)

international: country code - 56; landing points for the Pan-Am, Prat, SAm-1, American Movil-Telxius West Coast Cable, FOS Quellon-Chacabuco, Fibra Optical Austral, SAC and Curie submarine cables providing links to the US, Caribbean and to Central and South America; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) (2019)

note: the COVID-19 outbreak is negatively impacting telecommunications production and supply chains globally; consumer spending on telecom devices and services has also slowed due to the pandemic's effect on economies worldwide; overall progress towards improvements in all facets of the telecom industry - mobile, fixed-line, broadband, submarine cable and satellite - has moderated

Broadcast media

national and local terrestrial TV channels, coupled with extensive cable TV networks; the state-owned Television Nacional de Chile (TVN) network is self-financed through commercial advertising revenues and is not under direct government control; large number of privately owned TV stations; about 250 radio stations

Internet users

total: 14,757,868

percent of population: 82.33% (July 2018 est.)

country comparison to the world: 45

Broadband - fixed subscriptions

total: 3,250,678

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 18 (2018 est.)

country comparison to the world: 39

Transportation

National air transport system

number of registered air carriers: 9 (2020)

inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 173

annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 19,517,185 (2018)

annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 1,226,440,000 mt-km (2018)

Airports - with paved runways

total: 90 (2017)

over 3,047 m: 5 (2017)

2,438 to 3,047 m: 7 (2017)

1,524 to 2,437 m: 23 (2017)

914 to 1,523 m: 31 (2017)

under 914 m: 24 (2017)

Airports - with unpaved runways

total: 391 (2013)

2,438 to 3,047 m: 5 (2013)

1,524 to 2,437 m: 11 (2013)

914 to 1,523 m: 56 (2013)

under 914 m: 319 (2013)

Heliports

1 (2013)

Pipelines

3160 km gas, 781 km liquid petroleum gas, 985 km oil, 722 km refined products (2013)

Railways

total: 7,282 km (2014)

narrow gauge: 3,853.5 km 1.000-m gauge (2014)

broad gauge: 3,428 km 1.676-m gauge (1,691 km electrified) (2014)

country comparison to the world: 30

Merchant marine

total: 229

by type: bulk carrier 8, container ship 5, general cargo 56, oil tanker 13, other 147 (2020)

country comparison to the world: 64

Ports and terminals

major seaport(s): Coronel, Huasco, Lirquen, Puerto Ventanas, San Antonio, San Vicente, Valparaiso

container port(s) (TEUs): San Antonio (1,296,890), Valparaiso (1,073,734) (2017)

LNG terminal(s) (import): Mejillones, Quintero

Military and Security

Military and security forces

Armed Forces of Chile (Fuerzas Armadas de Chile):  Chilean Army (Ejército de Chile), Chilean Navy (Armada de Chile, includes marine units and coast guard or Maritime Territory and Merchant Marine Directorate (Directemar)), Chilean Air Force (Fuerza Aerea de Chile, FACh); Ministry of Interior: Carabineros de Chile (National Police Force) (2021)

note: Carabineros de Chile are responsible to both the Ministry of Defense and the Ministry of Interior

Military expenditures

1.8% of GDP (2019)

1.9% of GDP (2018)

2% of GDP (2017)

2% of GDP (2016)

2% of GDP (2015)

country comparison to the world: 69

Military and security service personnel strengths

the Armed Forces of Chile have approximately 80,000 active personnel (45,000 Army; 22,000 Navy; 13,000 Air Force); approximately 50,000 Carabineros (2020)

Military equipment inventories and acquisitions

the Chilean military inventory is comprised of a wide mix of mostly Western equipment and some domestically-produced systems; since 2010, it has received military hardware from nearly 15 countries, with Australia, France, Germany, the Netherlands, and the US as the leading suppliers; Chile's defense industry has capabilities in military aircraft, ships, and vehicles (2020)

Military service age and obligation

18-45 years of age for voluntary male and female military service, although the right to compulsory recruitment of males 18-45 is retained; service obligation is 12 months for Army and 22 months for Navy and Air Force (2019)

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international

Chile and Peru rebuff Bolivia's reactivated claim to restore the Atacama corridor, ceded to Chile in 1884, but Chile has offered instead unrestricted but not sovereign maritime access through Chile to Bolivian natural gas; Chile rejects Peru's unilateral legislation to change its latitudinal maritime boundary with Chile to an equidistance line with a southwestern axis favoring Peru; in October 2007, Peru took its maritime complaint with Chile to the ICJ; territorial claim in Antarctica (Chilean Antarctic Territory) partially overlaps Argentine and British claims; the joint boundary commission, established by Chile and Argentina in 2001, has yet to map and demarcate the delimited boundary in the inhospitable Andean Southern Ice Field (Campo de Hielo Sur)

Refugees and internally displaced persons

refugees (country of origin): 474,818 (Venezuela) (economic and political crisis; includes Venezuelans who have claimed asylum or have received alternative legal stay) (2021)

Illicit drugs

transshipment country for cocaine destined for Europe and the region; some money laundering activity, especially through the Iquique Free Trade Zone; imported precursors passed on to Bolivia; domestic cocaine consumption is rising, making Chile a significant consumer of cocaine