Chile is the second country in Latin America for digital growth, reaching 71 percent growth just behind Colombia at 74 percent. The total Information Technology (IT) market in 2020 was worth US$6.4 billion, which represents 2.5 percent of Chile’s GDP, showing strong growth potential when comparing the market size percentage of GDP to other markets. In the U.S., the IT market represents approximately 10 percent of U.S. GDP, and in other European countries, the IT market represents between 5 and 10 percent of those countries’ GDP.
Over recent years, Chile has invested in a range of initiatives to strengthen its digital infrastructure, especially connectivity, storage and safe data transmission. Notable projects include fibre optic cables laid between Chile, California and Asia. Projects to further expand the fibre optic infrastructure include an investment of US$450 million that would expand the network from 18,000 to 36,000 kilometres, doubling the fibre optic backbone.
According to the Huawei Global Connectivity Index (CGI), Chile continues to be Latin America’s most connected country, a position it has held for more than 5 years in a row. Some key statistics include:
● Fixed Internet connections: 4.2 million (Subtel, Sept. 2021)
● Internet Users: 17.70 million internet users in Chile in January 2022, analysis indicates that internet users in Chile increased by 1.9 million (+12.2 percent) between 2021 and 2022
● Mobile Internet connections: 26.32 million cellular mobile connections at the start of 2022. Connections increased by 581,000 (+2.3 percent) between 2021 and 2022.
● 4G: 17.7 million connections (Subtel, Sept. 2020)
● Mobile phone lines: 24.6 million (Sept. 2020)
Chile’s level of higher education is ranked among the best in Latin America, with nine Chilean universities in the top 50 in the region, according to the 2021 QS Rankings, and two universities in the top 200 worldwide.
In December 2021, Chile became the first country in Latin America to activate a fifth generation of wireless networks. 5G is expected to transform technologies’ role in society and business radically and is currently being used in conjunction with other telecommunication technologies such as GPS, remote controls and Internet of Things, across many sectors, including in mining, agriculture and telemedicine. It is anticipated that 5G will strengthen the digital economy and incentivise the creation of apps and startups.
Data Centre Infrastructure and Cloud Services
The presence of multinational companies such as Google, IBM and AWS has accelerated data centre infrastructure development and thanks to Chile’s geography, the sustainable management of these centres can be developed and explored.
Chile’s digital capacity had aided the development of a strong global services sector where companies can locate offices to reach all of the Americas and the rest of the world. This is typically split into 3 different areas: