Chile is a small, dynamic trading partner located on the western coast of South America.
Trade is competitive, but regulations are transparent and easy to navigate.
Many major airlines serve Santiago, Chile's largest import market.
Inland air transportation is abundant.
Chile's Pacific Ocean ports are easily accessible for US exporters.
The largest port, Valparaiso, is 130 miles from Santiago.
Chile's credit rating is high and economic growth has been consistent.
Stable political climate and excellent relations with U.S. government
Chile is a member of APEC and Mercosur.
Chile has trade agreements with Canada and Mexico.
Trade agreement with the U.S. is nearing.
Agricultural Products: Wheat, Coarse Grains
Computers and Related Equipment
Food Processing Equipment
Pollution Control Equipment
Travel and Tourism
Financing is readily available in Chile for US export clients.
Santiago represents 80% of the Chilean market.
Difficult to reach other parts of Chile.
Retail goods available via supermarket or market storefronts.
Excellent Telecommunication infrastructure.
Pan American Highway is busy; many roadways in poor condition
Opening a branch or subsidiary operation improves market penetration and business networking.
Conservative dress in business--no flashy colors, sports jackets, or lapel decorations.
Women in business wear suits and heels.
Chileans stand closer than Americans when communicating--try not to back away.
Be careful with hand gestures.
Some American gestures are not appropriate and even obscene in Chilean culture.
Print business cards in English on one side and Spanish on the other and present them to business contacts.
Punctuality at meetings is important--but don't make an issue of someone else's tardiness.
Shake hands when greeting business contacts.
Avoid the hard sell.
Be prompt when answering business correspondence.
Customer support and service are very important.
Chilean law is based on Spanish code and not common law.
Previous court rulings not considered (no case law).
Criminal code specifies presumption of guilt, not innocence.
Legal reform is anticipated
Important to have a qualified local attorney review all business contracts.
Make eye contact when communicating.
Be about 15 minutes late to social events.
Don't talk about politics unless your host brings it up.
At social events, don't ask about occupation--wait for that information to be offered.