Chile vs. Argentina


18,186,770 (July 2020 est.)
45,479,118 (July 2020 est.)
Age structure
0-14 years: 19.79% (male 1,836,240/female 1,763,124)
15-24 years: 13.84% (male 1,283,710/female 1,233,238)
25-54 years: 42.58% (male 3,882,405/female 3,860,700)
55-64 years: 11.98% (male 1,034,049/female 1,145,022)
65 years and over: 11.81% (male 902,392/female 1,245,890) (2020 est.)
0-14 years: 24.02% (male 5,629,188/female 5,294,723)
15-24 years: 15.19% (male 3,539,021/female 3,367,321)
25-54 years: 39.6% (male 9,005,758/female 9,002,931)
55-64 years: 9.07% (male 2,000,536/female 2,122,699)
65 years and over: 12.13% (male 2,331,679/female 3,185,262) (2020 est.)
Median age
total: 35.5 years
male: 34.3 years
female: 36.7 years (2020 est.)
total: 32.4 years
male: 31.1 years
female: 33.6 years (2020 est.)
Population growth rate
0.71% (2020 est.)
0.86% (2020 est.)
Birth rate
13.1 births/1,000 population (2020 est.)
16 births/1,000 population (2020 est.)
Death rate
6.5 deaths/1,000 population (2020 est.)
7.4 deaths/1,000 population (2020 est.)
Net migration rate
0.3 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2020 est.)
-0.1 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2020 est.)
Sex ratio
at birth: 1.04 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.9 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.72 male(s)/female
total population: 96.7 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
at birth: 1.07 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.06 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.94 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.73 male(s)/female
total population: 98 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
Infant mortality rate
total: 6.2 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 6.6 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 5.7 deaths/1,000 live births (2020 est.)
total: 9 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 9.9 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 8.1 deaths/1,000 live births (2020 est.)
Life expectancy at birth
total population: 79.4 years
male: 76.3 years
female: 82.5 years (2020 est.)
total population: 77.8 years
male: 74.7 years
female: 81.1 years (2020 est.)
Total fertility rate
1.77 children born/woman (2020 est.)
2.21 children born/woman (2020 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate
0.5% (2019 est.)
0.4% (2019 est.)
noun: Chilean(s)
adjective: Chilean
noun: Argentine(s)
adjective: Argentine
Ethnic groups
white and non-indigenous 88.9%, Mapuche 9.1%, Aymara 0.7%, other indigenous groups 1% (includes Rapa Nui, Likan Antai, Quechua, Colla, Diaguita, Kawesqar, Yagan or Yamana), unspecified 0.3% (2012 est.)
European (mostly Spanish and Italian descent) and mestizo (mixed European and Amerindian ancestry) 97.2%, Amerindian 2.4%, African 0.4% (2010 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS
74,000 (201 est.)
140,000 (2019 est.)
Roman Catholic 66.7%, Evangelical or Protestant 16.4%, Jehovah's Witness 1%, other 3.4%, none 11.5%, unspecified 1.1% (2012 est.)
nominally Roman Catholic 92% (less than 20% practicing), Protestant 2%, Jewish 2%, other 4%
HIV/AIDS - deaths
<1000 (2018)
1,400 (2019 est.)
Spanish 99.5% (official), English 10.2%, indigenous 1% (includes Mapudungun, Aymara, Quechua, Rapa Nui), other 2.3%, unspecified 0.2% (2012 est.)

note: shares sum to more than 100% because some respondents gave more than one answer on the census

Spanish (official), Italian, English, German, French, indigenous (Mapudungun, Quechua)
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 96.4%
male: 96.3%
female: 96.3% (2017)
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 99%
male: 98.9%
female: 99.1% (2018)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)
total: 17 years
male: 16 years
female: 17 years (2018)
total: 18 years
male: 16 years
female: 19 years (2017)
Education expenditures
5.4% of GDP (2017)
5.5% of GDP (2017)
urban population: 87.7% of total population (2020)
rate of urbanization: 0.87% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
urban population: 92.1% of total population (2020)
rate of urbanization: 1.07% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
Drinking water source
improved: urban: 100% of population
rural: 100% of population
total: 100% of population
unimproved: urban: 0% of population
rural: 0% of population
total: 0% of population (2017 est.)
improved: urban: 99% of population
rural: 100% of population
total: 99.1% of population
unimproved: urban: 1% of population
rural: 0% of population
total: 0.9% of population (2015 est.)
Sanitation facility access
improved: urban: 100% of population
rural: 100% of population
total: 100% of population
unimproved: urban: 0% of population
rural: 0% of population
total: 0% of population (2017 est.)
improved: urban: 98.3% of population (2017 est.)
unimproved: urban: 1.7% of population (2017 est.)
Major cities - population
6.767 million SANTIAGO (capital), 984,000 Valparaiso, 881,000 Concepcion (2020)
15.154 million BUENOS AIRES (capital), 1.573 million Cordoba, 1.532 million Rosario, 1.173 million Mendoza, 986,000 San Miguel de Tucuman, 884,000 La Plata (2020)
Maternal mortality rate
13 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)
39 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight
0.5% (2014)
1.7% (2018/19)
Health expenditures
9% (2017)
9.1% (2017)
Physicians density
2.44 physicians/1,000 population (2017)
3.99 physicians/1,000 population (2017)
Hospital bed density
2.1 beds/1,000 population (2017)
5 beds/1,000 population (2017)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate
28% (2016)
28.3% (2016)
Demographic profile

Chile is in the advanced stages of demographic transition and is becoming an aging society - with fertility below replacement level, low mortality rates, and life expectancy on par with developed countries. Nevertheless, with its dependency ratio nearing its low point, Chile could benefit from its favorable age structure. It will need to keep its large working-age population productively employed, while preparing to provide for the needs of its growing proportion of elderly people, especially as women - the traditional caregivers - increasingly enter the workforce. Over the last two decades, Chile has made great strides in reducing its poverty rate, which is now lower than most Latin American countries. However, its severe income inequality ranks as the worst among members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Unequal access to quality education perpetuates this uneven income distribution.

Chile has historically been a country of emigration but has slowly become more attractive to immigrants since transitioning to democracy in 1990 and improving its economic stability (other regional destinations have concurrently experienced deteriorating economic and political conditions). Most of Chile's small but growing foreign-born population consists of transplants from other Latin American countries, especially Peru.

Argentina's population continues to grow but at a slower rate because of its steadily declining birth rate. Argentina's fertility decline began earlier than in the rest of Latin America, occurring most rapidly between the early 20th century and the 1950s, and then becoming more gradual. Life expectancy has been improving, most notably among the young and the poor. While the population under age 15 is shrinking, the youth cohort - ages 15-24 - is the largest in Argentina's history and will continue to bolster the working-age population. If this large working-age population is well-educated and gainfully employed, Argentina is likely to experience an economic boost and possibly higher per capita savings and investment. Although literacy and primary school enrollment are nearly universal, grade repetition is problematic and secondary school completion is low. Both of these issues vary widely by region and socioeconomic group.

Argentina has been primarily a country of immigration for most of its history, welcoming European immigrants (often providing needed low-skilled labor) after its independence in the 19th century and attracting especially large numbers from Spain and Italy. More than 7 million European immigrants are estimated to have arrived in Argentina between 1880 and 1930, when it adopted a more restrictive immigration policy. European immigration also began to wane in the 1930s because of the global depression. The inflow rebounded temporarily following WWII and resumed its decline in the 1950s when Argentina's military dictators tightened immigration rules and European economies rebounded. Regional migration increased, however, supplying low-skilled workers escaping economic and political instability in their home countries. As of 2015, immigrants made up almost 5% of Argentina's population, the largest share in South America. Migration from neighboring countries accounted for approximately 80% of Argentina's immigrant population in 2015.

The first waves of highly skilled Argentine emigrant workers headed mainly to the United States and Spain in the 1960s and 1970s, driven by economic decline and repressive military dictatorships. The 2008 European economic crisis drove the return migration of some Argentinean and other Latin American nationals, as well as the immigration of Europeans to South America, where Argentina was a key recipient. In 2015, Argentina received the highest number of legal migrants in Latin America and the Caribbean. The majority of its migrant inflow came from Paraguay and Bolivia.

Contraceptive prevalence rate
76.3% (2015/16)
81.3% (2013)
Dependency ratios
total dependency ratio: 45.9
youth dependency ratio: 28.1
elderly dependency ratio: 17.9
potential support ratio: 5.6 (2020 est.)
total dependency ratio: 56.5
youth dependency ratio: 38.1
elderly dependency ratio: 17.7
potential support ratio: 5.6 (2020 est.)

Source: CIA Factbook