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Market Overview

As the United States - Chile Free Trade Agreement (FTA) concludes its tenth year, trade in products and services continues to be a resounding success. As of January 1, 2004, duties were reduced to zero on 90% of U.S. exports to Chile with all remaining tariffs to be phased out by 2015.

In 2013, bilateral trade between the United States and Chile reached US$ 27.9 billion, an increase of over 330% in bilateral trade levels before the U.S.-Chile FTA was implemented. U.S. exports to Chile in 2013 reached US$ 17.5 billion, while imports from Chile reached a record US$ 10.4 billion.

In 2010, the United States and Chile concluded the negotiations of a bilateral tax treaty that has not yet been ratified in either Congress.

The United States remains the single largest cumulative direct investor in Chile. In 2012, the United States represented a materialized investment of US$ 2.9 billion. Canada came in second with US$ 944 million, and Spain followed with US$ 107 million, according to the Foreign Direct Investment Committee.

Both macroeconomic stability and growing integration with international capital markets has earned Chile an A+ credit rating, the highest in Latin America.

Chile remains one of the most stable and prosperous developing nations and consistently ranks high on international indices relating to economic freedom, transparency, and competitiveness. It also performs very well in terms of government efficiency, low levels of corruption, openness to foreign trade and was the highest ranked country in Latin America in terms of economic competitiveness, according to the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report 2013-2014.

Chile continues to pursue market-oriented strategies, expand global commercial ties, and actively participate in international issues and hemispheric free trade. Chile is a member of the Pacific Alliance, the Rio Group, an associate member of Mercosur, a full member of APEC, and a founding member of the Trans Pacific Partnership and UNASUR. In 2010, Chile became the 31st member of the OECD, only the second Latin American country to join after Mexico.

With Free Trade Agreements with Europe, China, India, and North America, Chile has given its nearly 17 million citizens unprecedented access to the world’s products and services. This offers a unique opportunity for U.S. exporters interested in expanding their businesses in arguably the most open and stable market in Latin America.

As of August 2014, the Chilean Congress is debating a new tax reform bill that could have implications in the corporate tax rate. Learn about Doing Business in Chile in our Country Commercial Guide (CCG).  This comprehensive document presents an overview of the local commercial environment, using economic, political, and market analysis. It is prepared annually through the combined efforts of several U.S. Government agencies at the U.S. Embassy.


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