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Chile (2006)

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Chile 2006 year

 Chile
Administrative divisions 13 regions (regiones, singular - region); Aisen del General Carlos Ibanez del Campo, Antofagasta, Araucania, Atacama, Bio-Bio, Coquimbo, Libertador General Bernardo O'Higgins, Los Lagos, Magallanes y de la Antartica Chilena, Maule, Region Metropolitana (Santiago), Tarapaca, Valparaiso


note: the US does not recognize claims to Antarctica
Age structure 0-14 years: 24.7% (male 2,035,278/female 1,944,754)


15-64 years: 67.1% (male 5,403,525/female 5,420,497)


65 years and over: 8.2% (male 555,075/female 775,090) (2006 est.)
Agriculture - products grapes, apples, pears, onions, wheat, corn, oats, peaches, garlic, asparagus, beans; beef, poultry, wool; fish; timber
Airports 363 (2006)
Airports - with paved runways total: 73


over 3,047 m: 5


2,438 to 3,047 m: 7


1,524 to 2,437 m: 22


914 to 1,523 m: 22


under 914 m: 17 (2006)
Airports - with unpaved runways total: 290


over 3,047 m: 1


2,438 to 3,047 m: 4


1,524 to 2,437 m: 11


914 to 1,523 m: 58


under 914 m: 216 (2006)
Area total: 756,950 sq km


land: 748,800 sq km


water: 8,150 sq km


note: includes Easter Island (Isla de Pascua) and Isla Sala y Gomez
Area - comparative slightly smaller than twice the size of Montana
Background Prior to the coming of the Spanish in the 16th century, northern Chile was under Inca rule while Araucanian Indians inhabited central and southern Chile; the latter were not completely subjugated by Spain until the early 1880s. Although Chile declared its independence in 1810, decisive victory over the Spanish was not achieved until 1818. In the War of the Pacific (1879-84), Chile defeated Peru and Bolivia and won its present northern lands. A three-year-old Marxist government of Salvador ALLENDE was overthrown in 1973 by a dictatorial military regime led by Augusto PINOCHET, who ruled until a freely elected president was installed in 1990. Sound economic policies, maintained consistently since the 1980s, have contributed to steady growth and have 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.
Birth rate 15.23 births/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Budget revenues: $29.2 billion


expenditures: $24.75 billion; including capital expenditures of $3.33 billion (2005 est.)
Capital name: Santiago


geographic coordinates: 33 27 S, 70 40 W


time difference: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)


daylight saving time: +1hr, begins second Sunday in October; ends second Sunday in March
Climate temperate; desert in north; Mediterranean in central region; cool and damp in south
Coastline 6,435 km
Constitution 11 September 1980, effective 11 March 1981; amended 1989, 1991, 1997, 1999, 2000, 2003, and 2005
Country name conventional long form: Republic of Chile


conventional short form: Chile


local long form: Republica de Chile


local short form: Chile
Death rate 5.81 deaths/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Debt - external $47.45 billion (2005 est.)
Diplomatic representation from the US chief of mission: Ambassador Craig A. KELLY


embassy: Avenida Andres Bello 2800, Las Condes, Santiago


mailing address: APO AA 34033


telephone: [56] (2) 232-2600


FAX: [56] (2) 330-3710
Diplomatic representation in the US chief of mission: Ambassador Mariano FERNANDEZ


chancery: 1732 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20036


telephone: [1] (202) 530-4104, 530-4106, 530-4107


FAX: [1] (202) 887-5579


consulate(s) general: Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, San Juan (Puerto Rico)
Disputes - international Chile rebuffs Bolivia's reactivated claim to restore the Atacama corridor, ceded to Chile in 1884, offering instead unrestricted but not sovereign maritime access through Chile to Bolivian gas and other commodities; Peru proposes changing its latitudinal maritime boundary with Chile to an equidistance line with a southwestern axis; territorial claim in Antarctica (Chilean Antarctic Territory) partially overlaps Argentine and British claims; action by the joint boundary commission, established by Chile and Argentina in 2001, for mapping and demarcating the disputed boundary in the Andean Southern Ice Field (Campo de Hielo Sur) remains pending
Economic aid - recipient $0 (2002)
Economy - overview Chile has a market-oriented economy characterized by a high level of foreign trade. During the early 1990s, Chile's reputation as a role model for economic reform was strengthened when the democratic government of Patricio AYLWIN - which took over from the military in 1990 - deepened the economic reform initiated by the military government. Growth in real GDP averaged 8% during 1991-97, but fell to half that level in 1998 because of tight monetary policies implemented to keep the current account deficit in check and because of lower export earnings - the latter a product of the global financial crisis. A severe drought exacerbated the recession in 1999, reducing crop yields and causing hydroelectric shortfalls and electricity rationing, and Chile experienced negative economic growth for the first time in more than 15 years. Despite the effects of the recession, Chile maintained its reputation for strong financial institutions and sound policy that have given it the strongest sovereign bond rating in South America. By the end of 1999, exports and economic activity had begun to recover, and growth rebounded to 4.2% in 2000. Growth fell back to 3.1% in 2001 and 2.1% in 2002, largely due to lackluster global growth and the devaluation of the Argentine peso. Chile's economy began a slow recovery in 2003, growing 3.2%, and accelerated to 6.1% in 2004-05, while Chile maintained a low rate of inflation. GDP growth benefited from high copper prices, solid export earnings (particularly forestry, fishing, and mining), and stepped-up foreign direct investment. Unemployment, however, remains stubbornly high. Chile deepened its longstanding commitment to trade liberalization with the signing of a free trade agreement with the US, which took effect on 1 January 2004. Chile signed a free trade agreement with China in November 2005, and it already has several trade deals signed with other nations and blocs, including the European Union, Mercosur, South Korea, and Mexico. Record-high copper prices helped to strengthen the peso to a 5-year high, as of December 2005, and will boost GDP in 2006.
Electricity - consumption 44.13 billion kWh (2003)
Electricity - exports 0 kWh (2003)
Electricity - imports 2 billion kWh (2003)
Electricity - production 45.3 billion kWh (2003)
Elevation extremes lowest point: Pacific Ocean 0 m


highest point: Nevado Ojos del Salado 6,880 m
Environment - current issues widespread deforestation and mining threaten natural resources; air pollution from industrial and vehicle emissions; water pollution from raw sewage
Environment - international agreements party to: Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling


signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Ethnic groups white and white-Amerindian 95%, Amerindian 3%, other 2%
Exchange rates Chilean pesos per US dollar - 560.09 (2005), 609.37 (2004), 691.43 (2003), 688.94 (2002), 634.94 (2001)
Executive branch chief of state: President Michelle BACHELET Jeria (since 11 March 2006); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government


head of government: President Michelle BACHELET Jeria (since 11 March 2006)


cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president


elections: president elected by popular vote for a single four-year term; election last held 11 December 2005, with runoff election held 15 January 2006 (next to be held December 2009)


election results: Michelle BACHELET Jeria elected president; percent of vote - Michelle BACHELET Jeria 53.5%; Sebastian PINERA Echenique 46.5%
Exports 0 kWh (2003)
Exports $38.03 billion f.o.b. (2005 est.)
Exports 0 cu m (2002)
Exports 0 bbl/day
Exports - commodities copper, fruit, fish products, paper and pulp, chemicals, wine
Exports - partners US 15.8%, Japan 11.5%, China 11.1%, Netherlands 5.8%, South Korea 5.5%, Brazil 4.4%, Italy 4.2%, Mexico 4% (2005)
Fiscal year calendar year
Flag description two equal horizontal bands of white (top) and red; there is 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 stands for the blood spilled to achieve independence; design was influenced by the US flag
GDP - composition by sector agriculture: 6%


industry: 49.3%


services: 44.7% (2005 est.)
GDP - real growth rate 6.3% (2005 est.)
Geographic coordinates 30 00 S, 71 00 W
Geography - note strategic location relative to sea lanes between Atlantic and Pacific Oceans (Strait of Magellan, Beagle Channel, Drake Passage); Atacama Desert is one of world's driest regions
Household income or consumption by percentage share lowest 10%: 1.2%


highest 10%: 47% (2000)
Illicit drugs important transshipment country for cocaine destined for Europe; economic prosperity and increasing trade have made Chile more attractive to traffickers seeking to launder drug profits, especially through the Iquique Free Trade Zone, but a new anti-money-laundering law improves controls; imported precursors passed on to Bolivia; domestic cocaine consumption is rising
Imports 2 billion kWh (2003)
Imports $30.09 billion f.o.b. (2005 est.)
Imports 5.337 billion cu m (2002 est.)
Imports 221,500 bbl/day (2003 est.)
Imports - commodities petroleum and petroleum products, chemicals, electrical and telecommunications equipment, industrial machinery, vehicles, natural gas
Imports - partners Argentina 14.8%, US 14.6%, Brazil 11.7%, China 7.8%, South Korea 4.8%, Yemen 4.4% (2005)
Independence 18 September 1810 (from Spain)
Industrial production growth rate 3.4% (2005 est.)
Industries copper, other minerals, foodstuffs, fish processing, iron and steel, wood and wood products, transport equipment, cement, textiles
Infant mortality rate total: 8.58 deaths/1,000 live births


male: 9.32 deaths/1,000 live births


female: 7.8 deaths/1,000 live births (2006 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 3.1% (2005 est.)
International organization participation APEC, BIS, CAN (associate), CSN, FAO, G-15, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt (signatory), ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITU, LAES, LAIA, Mercosur (associate), MIGA, MINUSTAH, NAM, OAS, OPANAL, OPCW, PCA, RG, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNMOGIP, UNTSO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO
Irrigated land 19,000 sq km (2003)
Judicial branch Supreme Court or Corte Suprema (judges are appointed by the president and ratified by the Senate from lists of candidates provided by the court itself; the president of the Supreme Court is elected every three years by the 20-member court); Constitutional Tribunal
Labor force 6.3 million (2005 est.)
Labor force - by occupation agriculture: 13.6%


industry: 23.4%


services: 63% (2003)
Land boundaries total: 6,339 km


border countries: Argentina 5,308 km, Bolivia 860 km, Peru 171 km
Land use arable land: 2.62%


permanent crops: 0.43%


other: 96.95% (2005)
Languages Spanish
Legal system based on Code of 1857 derived from Spanish law and subsequent codes influenced by French and Austrian law; judicial review of legislative acts in the Supreme Court; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction; note - in June 2005, Chile completed overhaul of its criminal justice system to a new, US-style adversarial system
Legislative branch bicameral National Congress or Congreso Nacional consists of the Senate or Senado (38 seats elected by popular vote; members serve eight-year terms - one-half elected every four years) and the Chamber of Deputies or Camara de Diputados (120 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms)


elections: Senate - last held 11 December 2005 (next to be held December 2009); Chamber of Deputies - last held 11 December 2005 (next to be held December 2009)


election results: Senate - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - CPD 20 (PDC 6, PS 8, PPD 3, PRSD 3), APC 17 (UDI 9, RN 8), independent 1; Chamber of Deputies - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - CPD 65 (PDC 21, PPD 22, PS 15, PRSD 7), APC 54 (UDI 34, RN 20), independent 1
Life expectancy at birth total population: 76.77 years


male: 73.49 years


female: 80.21 years (2006 est.)
Literacy definition: age 15 and over can read and write


total population: 96.2%


male: 96.4%


female: 96.1% (2003 est.)
Location Southern South America, bordering the South Pacific Ocean, between Argentina and Peru
Map references South America
Maritime claims territorial sea: 12 nm


contiguous zone: 24 nm


exclusive economic zone: 200 nm


continental shelf: 200/350 nm
Merchant marine total: 46 ships (1000 GRT or over) 649,091 GRT/898,110 DWT


by type: bulk carrier 10, cargo 6, chemical tanker 10, container 1, liquefied gas 2, passenger 4, passenger/cargo 2, petroleum tanker 7, roll on/roll off 1, vehicle carrier 3


foreign-owned: 1 (Argentina 1)


registered in other countries: 17 (Argentina 6, Brazil 1, Marshall Islands 1, Panama 9) (2006)
Military branches Army of the Nation, National Navy (Armada de Chile, includes naval air, marine corps, and Maritime Territory and Merchant Marine Directorate (Directemar)), Chilean Air Force (Fuerza Aerea de Chile, FACh), Chilean Carabineros (National Police) (2006)
Military expenditures - dollar figure $3.91 billion (2005 est.)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP 3.5% (2005 est.)
National holiday Independence Day, 18 September (1810)
Nationality noun: Chilean(s)


adjective: Chilean
Natural hazards severe earthquakes; active volcanism; tsunamis
Natural resources copper, timber, iron ore, nitrates, precious metals, molybdenum, hydropower
Net migration rate 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2006 est.)
Pipelines gas 2,567 km; gas/lpg 42 km; liquid petroleum gas 539 km; oil 1,003 km; refined products 757 km; unknown (oil/water) 97 km (2006)
Political parties and leaders Alliance for Chile ("Alianza") or APC (including National Renewal or RN [Sergio DIEZ Urzia] and Independent Democratic Union or UDI [Jovino NOVOA Vasquez]); Coalition of Parties for Democracy ("Concertacion") or CPD (including Christian Democratic Party or PDC [Adolfo ZALDIVAR Larrain], Socialist Party or PS [Ricardo NUNEZ], Party for Democracy or PPD [Victor BARRUETO], Radical Social Democratic Party or PRSD [Jose Antonio GOMEZ Urrutia]); Communist Party or PC [Guillermo TEILLIER]
Political pressure groups and leaders revitalized university student federations at all major universities; Roman Catholic Church; United Labor Central or CUT includes trade unionists from the country's five largest labor confederations
Population 16,134,219 (July 2006 est.)
Population below poverty line 18.2% (2005)
Population growth rate 0.94% (2006 est.)
Radio broadcast stations AM 180 (eight inactive), FM 64, shortwave 17 (one inactive) (1998)
Railways total: 6,585 km


broad gauge: 2,831 km 1.676-m gauge (1,317 km electrified)


narrow gauge: 3,754 km 1.000-m gauge (2005)
Religions Roman Catholic 89%, Protestant 11%, Jewish NEGL%
Sex ratio at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female


under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female


15-64 years: 1 male(s)/female


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


total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2006 est.)
Suffrage 18 years of age; universal and compulsory
Telephone system general assessment: modern system based on extensive microwave radio relay facilities


domestic: extensive microwave radio relay links; domestic satellite system with three earth stations


international: country code - 56; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean)
Telephones - main lines in use 3,435,900 (2005)
Telephones - mobile cellular 10.57 million (2005)
Television broadcast stations 63 (plus 121 repeaters) (1997)
Terrain low coastal mountains; fertile central valley; rugged Andes in east
Total fertility rate 2 children born/woman (2006 est.)
Unemployment rate 8.1% (2005 est.)
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