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Chile: Economy

Economy Chile
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 4.4% in 2000. Growth fell back to 2.8% in 2001 and 1.8% in 2002, largely due to lackluster global growth and the devaluation of the Argentine peso. Unemployment remains stubbornly high, putting pressure on President LAGOS to improve living standards. One bright spot was the signing of a free trade agreement with the US, which will take effect on 1 January 2004.
GDP:
purchasing power parity - $156.1 billion (2002 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
2.1% (2002 est.)
GDP - per capita:
purchasing power parity - $10,100 (2002 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 11%
industry: 34%
services: 56% (2001)
Population below poverty line:
21% (1998 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 1.3%
highest 10%: 45.6% (1998)
Distribution of family income - Gini index:
56.7 (1998)
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
2.5% (2002 est.)
Labor force:
5.9 million (2000 est.)
Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture 14%, industry 27%, services 59% (1997 est.)
Unemployment rate:
9.2% (2002)
Budget:
revenues: $17 billion
expenditures: $17 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2001 est.)
Industries:
copper, other minerals, foodstuffs, fish processing, iron and steel, wood and wood products, transport equipment, cement, textiles
Industrial production growth rate:
-1.5% (2002 est.)
Electricity - production:
41.66 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 47%
hydro: 51.5%
other: 1.4% (2001)
nuclear: 0%
Electricity - consumption:
40.13 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - exports:
0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - imports:
1.386 billion kWh (2001)
Oil - production:
13,640 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - consumption:
241,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - exports:
NA (2001)
Oil - imports:
NA (2001)
Oil - proved reserves:
81.05 million bbl (37257)
Natural gas - production:
1.2 billion cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - consumption:
6.47 billion cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - exports:
0 cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - imports:
5.27 billion cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves:
67.78 billion cu m (37257)
Agriculture - products:
wheat, corn, grapes, beans, sugar beets, potatoes, fruit; beef, poultry, wool; fish; timber
Exports:
$17.8 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Exports - commodities:
copper, fish, fruits, paper and pulp, chemicals
Exports - partners:
US 19.1%, Japan 10.5%, China 6.7%, Mexico 5%, Italy 4.7%, UK 4.4% (2002)
Imports:
$15.6 billion f.o.b. (2002)
Imports - commodities:
consumer goods, chemicals, motor vehicles, fuels, electrical machinery, heavy industrial machinery, food
Imports - partners:
Argentina 18%, US 14.9%, Brazil 9.5%, China 6.5%, Germany 4.3% (2002)
Debt - external:
$40.4 billion (2002)
Economic aid - recipient:
ODA, $40 million (2001 est.)
Currency:
Chilean peso (CLP)
Currency code:
CLP
Exchange rates:
Chilean pesos per US dollar - 688.95 (2002), 634.94 (2001), 535.47 (2000), 508.78 (1999), 460.29 (1998)
Fiscal year:
calendar year

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Source: The CIA World Fact Book 2003

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