- Capital: Santiago
- Area: 756.626 km²
- Population: 16,6 Mio inhabitants (2007)
- Population density: 21 inhabitants / km²
- Religion: Catholics 70 %, Protestants 10 %, Other approx. 20 %
- Germans in Chile: approx. 200.000
- Official language: Spanish
- Form of Government: Republic and presidential democracy
- Climate: from deserts over Mediterranean climate to temperate zones
- Inflation: 7,8 % (2007)
- Unemployment: approx. 8 %
Dimensions of the country:
Chile covers an area of 756,626 km² and is more than double the size of Germany. One of its characteristics is its shape. Chile stretches 4.300 km from north to south, but only 180 km from east to west. Neighboring countries are Argentina, Bolivia and Peru. The Pacific Ocean is its natural border in the west and south. The Easter Island, the Isle Salay y Gómez, the Juan-Fernández Isles, the Desventruraras Isles, the Ildefonso and the Diego-Ramirez Isles, all in the Pacific Ocean, also belong to Chile. Additionally Chile claims part of the Antarctica.
Chile has a population of 16.6 million people. At present the yearly population growth is approx. 1.2 % which is clearly below the Latin American average. The Chelonian population is rather homogeneous with 95.4 % of its population having European ancestors. 4.6 % belong to indigenous groups:
- Mapuche (93 %)
- Aimará (5 %)
- Rapanui (2 %)
Next to the Spaniards, who were the biggest group to settle in Chile, other groups - Italians, Germans, French, Serbo-Croats etc. - have immigrated and shaped the ethnical make up of the Chilean population. Infant mortality is 1.2%. Alphabetization rate is approx. 95.6%. Despite the high pro rate inland product the gap between rich and poor is very obvious in Chile. A lot of people live in slums while others are earning top salaries.
Approx. 70% of the population is Catholic and 10% Protestant. The other 20% belong to Agnosticism, to natural religions, Jehovah's Witnesses, the Mormonism Church, are of Jewish descent or other beliefs.
The official language in Chile is Spanish. Additionally, there is a German minority in the South of the country. Indigenous languages are e.g. Mapudungun, Quechua und Aymara.
Chile can be divided into three different temperate zones. Its north is shaped by the plateau with mountains as high as 6,000 m as well as one of the driest deserts in the world. No rain for years is not uncommon. Chile's capital, Santiago, is situated in central Chile and has a Mediterranean climate. The South of the country is wet and cool. Temperatures in the South range from 4° (winter) to 11°C (summer), in Central Chile from 11° (winter) to 28°C (summer) and from 15° to 29° in the North of the country all year round. But at night temperatures can drop far below 0°C.
- Approx. 13,000 year BC first people settled in the Mapuches, today's Chilenian national territory.
- The Inka Kingdom occupied Chile from the North to the Río Maule for a short time.
- Portuguese Ferdinand Magellan was the first European to discover Chile's Southern point in 1520.
- 1541 the first Europeans settled in today's Chile and founded the city of Santiago.
- In 1542 Chile became part of the Spanish Viceroyality Peru.
- The bellicont Mapuche prevented a Spanish colonization of the South of Chile in the Arauco War.
- In 1641 the Spaniards acknowledged an independent Mapuche State. This only became part of Chile in 1883.
- On 18 September 1810 a junta was founded which declared Chile an independent province of Spain.
- Total autonomy was declared only a short time later, which was followed by a War for Independence. Spain won in 1814.
- In 1818 an army of Chileans and Argentines defeated the Spaniards and Bernardo O'Higgins became the first Chilean Head of State.
- The rest of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th centuries were on the one hand shaped by internal conflicts, wars with Spain and Chile's neighboring countries, but also by an economic boom due to conquests and the discovery of copper resources.
- In 1970 the left leaning coalition Unidad Popularwon the election and Salvador Allende was elected president. Important economic sectors were privatized.
- On 11 September 1973 a military coup heaved Augusto Pinochet as the leader of a junta consisting of military generals into power. The beginning of a brutal dictatorship.
- In 1989 the first election after the dictatorship took place. Patricio Aylwin of the Christian Democratic Party was elected President.
- 1973 Pinochet takes over power.
- Its constituency dates back to the year 1980 and was passed after a referendum under Pinochet's dictatorship.
- 1987 Readmission of political parties.
- 1988 Referendum in which the population decided against another term of Pinochet.
- 1989 First free elections; the president is elected for 4 years and cannot be re-elected for another 4 years.
- Today the first female president socialist Michelle Bachelet is Chile's head of state.
Chile is considered a threshold country due to its economic growth during the last two decades and its growing middle class. Nevertheless, the gap between rich and poor is big and about 1/5th of Chelonians live beneath the poverty line.
In comparison to the other South American nations its economy is good. It has the biggest copper resources in the world. Additionally, the country possesses different precious metals and saltpeter.
Chile is in competition with Germany when it comes to the title export world champion. Particularly copper export plays a big part. The export of wood, fruit, wine, salmon, seafood and other food products becomes more and more important though.
- Gap between rich and poor
- Expensive educational system - bad public schools
- Not a lot of social security possible
Further Information Internship Chile:
Many students also have found an internship in Chile on this webpage of Praktikumsanzeigen.info! Have a look at: Praktikum...