Chile - Export Britain

Export Britain


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Largest city

Administrative divisions
15 regions

Peso (CLP)

756,096.3 km2

17.8 million  (2012) 

Calling code

Official language

Latest Business Opportunities

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Ease of trading across borders

Importing a standard container of goods into Chile requires:



Chile is one of South America's most stable and prosperous nations. It is considered as a high-income economy and hence as a developed country. Sound economic policies, maintained consistently since the 1980s, have contributed to steady economic growth in Chile and have more than halved poverty rates. Chile has a market-oriented economy characterised by a high level of foreign trade and a reputation for strong financial institutions. Exports account for approximately one-third of GDP, with commodities making up three-quarters of total exports. Chile has 22 trade agreements covering 60 countries including agreements with the EU, China, India, South Korea, and Mexico. Chile has joined the US and nine other countries in negotiating the Trans-Pacific-Partnership trade agreement.

Economic snapshot (% annual growth rate)

GDP 5.6 4.2 4.3
Export of goods and services 0.9 6.1 6.9
Import of goods and services 4.8 4.1 6.9
Inflation 3.0 1.9 2.9
Exchange rate (per £) 767 737 754
Population 0.9 0.9 0.8
Unit Labour Cost -0.2 0.2 -1.4
Source: Oxford Economics

Economic outlook

The deceleration in late 2013 seems to be caused by weak performance of the manufacturing and wholesale sectors, while mining activity remained strong. The slowdown in the manufacturing sector appears to be the result of a weaker investment growth, due to some uncertainty about the economic policies of the new government and the fact that some energy and mining projects are affected by delays as it has become more difficult to obtain environmental permits. Chile has seen booming exports, particularly in the mining sector of the economy. But unlike other nations with significant exports of commodities, Chile has successfully diversified its economy away from over-dependence on those exports. For 2014, a slowdown in domestic demand, in particular private consumption, combined with a weaker expansion of public consumption will slow grow further.

Trade outlook

Chile’s total trade flows nearly stagnated in 2013. Asia dominated Chile’s international business, accounting for 40.3% of the flows of goods and services to and from the country. China, Chile’s top trade partner, accounted 22.3% of the country’s trade. North America followed in the ranking, with 21.2% of Chile’s trade flows. Even though total trade with Mexico, Canada and the US shrank, bilateral exchange with NAFTA’s members grew an average 13.9% yearly over the past decade. Meanwhile, Latin American and Caribbean countries act as the origin and/or destination of 19.4% of Chile’s total imports and exports, followed by Europe, which represents 17.9%.

SWOT analysis

Chile has emerged as an attractive destination for foreign investment led by economic liberalisation and structural reforms
Lack of skilled labour force.
Taxes in Chile are the lowest in Latin America and well below many European countries.
Trade competition compared to Asian peers with low-cost manufacturing.

Chile's trade with the UK

Sector segmentation growth

Sectors to watch:
  • sector
  • sector
  • manufacturing
  • manufacturing

Fastest-growing exporters into Chile

2 Norway
3 Czech Republic
4 Hungary
5 Russia
6 India
7 Netherlands
8 Poland
9 Turkey
10 France

Total merchandise trade - Leading import partners

Total merchandise trade - leading import partners
Opportunities for UK businesses

The Chilean economy continues to grow, and its robust export-oriented industries supply markets far beyond Chile’s borders. The Chilean business climate presents huge opportunities for UK businesses that sell equipment, technology, and services. There is also demand for training and niche accreditation in the areas of insurance, banking, IT, hospitality and catering.

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Your local Chamber provides a range of export services and links to overseas markets.
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