CHILE

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GENERAL DATA

Poverty rate:

30%

of the total population.

MIGRATION DATA

  • Sending country: More than 650,000 Chileans, or 3.5% of the population, reside abroad, mainly in Argentina (33.3%), the US (17.2%) and Spain (8.7%). 

  • Destination country: About 1,500,000 immigrants, representing 8% of the total population, live in Chile. Principal countries of origin are Venezuela (450,000 people), Haiti (200,000 people) and Peru (190,000 people).

  • Host country for refugees: 15,000 refugees and asylum seekers reside in Chile

IMPACT BY COVID-19

Hover over the country where you want to know the data.

* daily data update

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STATE MEASURES

  • The closure of borders is maintained through military and police surveillance. The Ministry of the Interior pushes to reinforce control.

  • October began with the advancement of the controversial Immigration Law proposed by the government. The Upper House of the Senate sent to its third constitutional process the bill that involves rapid expulsions for irregular migrants, even more so for those who are found to have “repeated violations of the law,” as well as return trips from the border. The opposition's proposal for a 90-day regularization process once the regulations come into force and the possibility of a “work tourism visa” were left out. According to the government, this proposal increased unregulated immigration.

  • Just one day after the law was approved in the upper house of the Senate, the Undersecretary of the Interior Juan Francisco Galli visited Tarapacá and Colchane, together with the Inspector General of Carabineros, Ricardo Yáñez, and the Director of consular affairs of the Foreign Ministry, Raúl Sanhueza. The main objective was to coordinate the reinforcement and control of the border due to the increase in unregulated crossings (the police estimate that at least 5,000 people have entered the country irregularly between January and September 2020). Galli announces that irregular migrants will be deported.

  • Days later (in the second week of October), the Chamber of Deputies rejected ten of the Senate amendments, among which the following stand out: the impossibility of returning or deporting people whose life and integrity are in danger in their country of origin; ineligibility of people with convictions or legal proceedings in Chile or other countries; inadmissibility of foreigners who make statements, perform acts, or carry out elements that constitute indications that they are preparing to commit a crime or offense; temporary residence permits instead of permanent ones for victims of trafficking and trafficking or gender-based violence; expiration of temporary residence as grounds for expulsion; among others.

  • By the end of October, the authorities of the Tamarugal province, Tarapacá region, were working to open a quarantine facility in Huara, due to the complex migratory situation that area is going through.

  • The Councilors of Huara are opposed to the communal stadium being used as a shelter for migrants. Meanwhile, The Governor of Tamarugal insists that this space can be used while the migrants are transferred to appropriate quarantine facilities.

  • By the end of November and after being sent to a mixed commission in October after a series of differences between the Chamber and the Senate, the immigration reform completed its fourth constitutional process. The ten questioned amendments will be voted one by one so as not to reject the entire report. Among the agreements reached, the legislators approved the creation of a visa to help women victims of trafficking and the elimination of the documentation that Eunacom requested from foreign doctors after five years of working in public institutions.

  • On December 3, the Senate approved with 38 votes in favor and two against, the report of the mixed commission of the new Immigration Law. It creates a National Migration Service, and it allows the regularization of migrants who have entered the country regularly before the pandemic (before March 18, 2020) and who do not have a criminal record, the others must leave the country within a period of 6 months.

  • Deputies from the Frente Amplio (left) requested a constitutionality review of 14 articles of the new immigration law before the Constitutional Court, thus delaying its entry into force. Given this, the Independent Democratic Union (right), advised by the Jaime Guzmán Foundation, presented a similar requirement to reverse the challenges of the Frente Amplio.

  • State authorities, through the media, have repeatedly insisted in the last quarter of 2020 that there has been an increase in irregular migration, along with COVID-19 infections and criminality. Likewise, they have been categorical in that those who enter irregularly face a trial and subsequent expulsion. This message is mainly addressed to Venezuelans and Bolivians.

*For more detail go to the digital archive that we created: