Chile

Chile Country Guide

The Human Rights and Business Country Guide to Chile was produced by the National Human Rights Institution of Chile in collaboration with the Danish Institute for Human Rights (DIHR).

The Country Guide is a compilation of publicly available information from international institutions, local civil society, governmental agencies, businesses, media and universities, among others. International and domestic sources are identified on the basis of their expertise and relevance to the Chilean context, as well as their timeliness and impartiality.

The survey of publicly available sources was carried out between 2014 and 2016 and received strategic input from local stakeholders and experts. It aims to provide a comprehensive overview, on the basis of the information available, of the ways in which companies do or may impact human rights in Chile. The current Country Guide is not meant as an end product, or a final determination of country conditions. It is intended to be the basis, and the beginning, of a process of dissemination, uptake and modification.

Beyond being human rights guidance for business, this Country Guide provides key input for the elaboration of Chile’s National Action Plan on Human Rights and Business (NAP), which is one of several initiatives that have resulted from the Country Guide process in Chile. This guide provides a baseline assessment of business impacts in Chile, which help to inform the elaboration of the Action Plan to be launched in 2017.

In the process of developing and implementing the NAP, the Country Guide has been used to identify local recommendations for the government to consider in the elaboration of NAP, as will be used in various multi-stakeholders events with the aim of facilitating dialogue between different stakeholders and building capacities.

The Human Rights and Business Country Guide to Chile was produced with the support of Swedish International Development Aid.

Read the full Country Guide in Spanish here

Read the full Country Guide here

News Feed

América Latina: Países llegan con desiguales avances a cumbre climática respecto a sus compromisos voluntarios de reducción de emisiones contaminantes

28 Oct 2017 — "América Latina llega con desiguales avances a cumbre climática", 24 oct 2017Difíciles de medir y desiguales en sus alcances son los avances que exhibirán los países de América Latina, respecto a sus compromisos voluntarios de reducción de emisiones contaminantes, durante la cumbre climática que acogerá en noviembre la ciudad alemana de Bonn. Las llamadas contribuciones determinadas a nivel nacional (NDC, en inglés) se consideran en conjunto insuficientes para la meta de estabilizar el aumento de la temperatura planetaria a dos grados centígrados. Pero además se debaten entre políticas contradictorias, como agudizar la extracción de hidrocarburos y al mismo tiempo fomentar el uso de energías renovables. "Hay avances en compromisos, aunque es un poco difícil decir cómo van. No es tan fácil de medir. Depende de la capacidad de cada gobierno para hacerlo. Algunos países tienen más transparencia y detalle que otros", dijo a IPS Lisa Viscini, directora del Programa de Energía, Cambio Climático e Industrias Extractivas del Diálogo Inter-Americano...."Algunos países no llegarán a sus metas, que además no son suficientes, hay que hacer más. Para evitar el cambio climático, no podemos seguir usando petróleo por 100 años, tiene que parar. Algunos países están desarrollando estrategias de largo plazo. Pero no hay suficiente dinero": Lisa Viscini. A lo largo de 2015, los 195 Estados parte de la Convención Marco de las Naciones Unidas sobre el Cambio Climático (CMNUCC) presentaron sus NDC, con sus compromisos voluntarios para reducir los gases de efecto invernadero..., que fueron incorporados al vinculante Acuerdo de Paris, en diciembre de ese año...La plataforma de análisis científico Monitoreo de la Acción Climática (CAT, en inglés)...cataloga de "insuficiente" las de Brasil, México y Perú; de "altamente insuficiente" la de Argentina y de "críticamente insuficiente" la de Chile, los países de la región incluidos en su análisis...

Latin America: Countries head to Climate Summit with uneven progress regarding their voluntary commitments to greenhouse gas emissions

28 Oct 2017 — "Latin America Heads to Climate Summit with Uneven Progress", 25 October 2017 ...Difficult to measure and unequal in their scope are the advances that the countries of Latin America will have to show, regarding their voluntary commitments to greenhouse gas emissions, during the climate summit to be hosted by Bonn, Germany in November. The so-called intended nationally-determined contributions (INDCs) are considered insufficient to reach the goal of stabilising the planetary temperature rise at two degrees Celsius. But the region also has contradictory policies, such as increasing the extraction of fossil fuels while at the same time promoting the use of renewable energies. "There are countries that have made progress with respect to their commitments, although it is a bit difficult to say how much. It is not so easy to measure. It depends on the ability of each government to do so. Some countries are more transparent and exhaustive than others," Lisa Viscidi, director of the Energy, Climate Change and Extractive Industries Programme at the Inter-American Dialogue, a Washington-based organisation, told IPS. Throughout 2015, the 195 State parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change...presented their INDCs with their voluntary commitments to reduce greenhouse gases (GHGs), which were incorporated into the binding Paris Agreement, in December...[2015]...The Climate Action Tracker (CAT)...gives Brazil, Mexico and Peru an "insufficient" rating, Argentina a "highly insufficient" rating, and Chile a "critically insufficient" rating – the countries of the region included in the analysis...

América Latina: Países chegam à Cúpula do Clima com progressos desiguais em relação aos compromissos voluntários para reduzir emissões poluentes

28 Oct 2017 — "Quem faz mais pelo clima na América Latina?", 24 de outubro de 2017Desde que Acordo de Paris passou a valer, mexicanos saem na frente na luta contra mudanças climáticas. Pequenos e disciplinados, Chile e Costa Rica também são destaque. Mas Brasil, maior poluidor, se afasta da meta...Desde que entrou em vigor, em 4 de novembro de 2016...perdeu um dos seus principais aliados, os Estados Unidos...Na América Latina, apenas Colômbia e Suriname ainda não ratificaram o Acordo...Da América Latina vêm cerca de 10% das emissões globais. Brasil e México são pesos-pesados desta balança: no ranking global dos poluidores, ocupam sétima e nona posição, respectivamente, ou mais da metade das emissões da região. "Vemos sinais desastrosos vindos do Brasil, totalmente contra a corrente", diz sobre a política ambiental Eduardo Viola, pesquisador da Universidade de Brasília e autor do livro Brazil and Climate Change, Beyond the Amazon. "Houve mais retrocessos que avanços, sem dúvida. O Congresso tem aprovado leis que contribuem para o aumento de emissões", afirma Rachel Biderman, diretora-executiva do WRI Brasil (World Resources Initiative), citando decretos e leis que reduzem áreas de conservação, estimulam a ocupação ilegal de áreas na Amazônia e flexibilizam o licenciamento ambiental. No caso do Brasil, o fim do desmatamento é crucial para queda de CO2 - o que o país prometeu fazer em 2020, segundo sua NDC. "A taxa de desmatamento atual está 70% acima da meta de 2020", aponta Carlos Rittl, secretário-executivo do Observatório do Clima. Apesar do recuo recente de 16% anunciado pelo governo, a situação é considerada crítica...A América Latina é detentora de muitos recursos cobiçados: 25% das terras férteis do planeta, 22% da floresta mundial, 31% da água potável...[E]...é uma região extremamente vulnerável às mudanças do clima. Segundo...Painel Intergovernamental de Mudanças Climáticas..., os impactos da elevação da temperatura ameaçam corais, derretimento das geleiras, erosão costeira com elevação do nível do mar, eventos extremos e enfraquecimento da Floresta Amazônica...

América Latina: Publicación de la CEPAL sobre planificación para el desarrollo llama a la coordinación entre gobiernos y empresas

23 Oct 2017

Suecia: Comienza juicio contra empresa minera sueca Boliden por residuos tóxicos exportados a Arica en Chile

18 Oct 2017 — "Comienza juicio de chilenos en contra de empresa sueca que dejó residuos tóxicos en Arica en los 80´", 17 de octubre de 2017 Más de 20 mil toneladas de residuos tóxicos provenientes de la minera sueca Boliden Metall fueron internadas por Arica entre 1984 y 1989 por la empresa chilena Promel... La idea era que los residuos tóxicos fueran tratados para recuperar oro y plata... la firma nacional nunca realizó dicho trabajo y abandonó los residuos en un lugar donde años más tarde se construirían cinco villas para 12 mil personas. Una parte importante de los habitantes... presentó síntomas de intoxicación por metales.... Diez años más tarde, la Corte Suprema determinó que Promel y sus socios debían reparar el daño y el Estado indemnizar a las 365 personas que participaron en la demanda con $8 millones para cada una. De forma paralela, abogados del estudio jurídico Fima (Fiscalía del Medio Ambiente) acudieron a la Corte Interamericana de Derechos Humanos (CIDH)... Este martes, comenzó un juicio por el caso en Suecia, país de origen de los residuos tóxicos. Johan Öberg, quien representa a 796 demandantes chilenos, ha estado trabajando en el caso junto ..al Centro de Derecho Ambiental Defensor de los EE.UU. (EDLC)...Los afectados exigen una compensación monetaria por cerca de $7.500 millones.  

Lawsuit against Boliden over export of toxic waste to Chile & its health impact on Arica residents starts in Sweden

18 Oct 2017 — "Swedish mining company Boliden in court over toxic waste in Chile", 17 Oct 2017 In 1984 and 1985, 20,000 tons of toxic waste from Boliden's smelting factory in Skellefteå, in northern Sweden, was shipped to Chile and the town of Arica. Boliden paid SEK 10 million to the Chilean company Promel, which said that they would extract arsenic and gold ore from the waste. But in reality, the waste was left open in a big black pile close to a residential area. For years, the children were even playing on the pile, which contained large amounts of arsenic and lead. In the 1990s it emerged that many people in Arica became seriously ill, suffering from cancer, chronic coughing, and aching joints. Some have already received compensation through Chilean lawsuits, which looked at the responsibility of Chilean authorities as well as the company Promel. (Promel went bust a few years after the deal with Boliden.) Now, a district court in Skellefteå will rule on whether Boliden also had a responsibility for the 796 people who have jointly sued the company for SEK 100 million in damages... Boliden claims they followed all the laws and rules that were in place at the time, and that Swedish as well as Chilean authorities knew about the export...[It] says any damages should be paid by the Chilean authorities, which allowed a residential area close to the waste, as well as Promel, which was responsible for taking care of the waste, but did not do it.  

Schwedischer Konzern entsorgte Giftmüll in Chile; Betroffene klagen nun auf Schadensersatz

19 Oct 2017 — "Musterprozess zu Umweltvergiftung: Spielen auf den Giftmüllbergen", 17 Oktober 2017 Ein Konzern entsorgte Zehntausende Tonnen von Giftmüll ins Ausland, obwohl der Konzernleitung bewusst war, wie gefährlich der Abfall war... Nun führen die Betroffenen einen Musterprozess. Es klagen 796 ChilenInnen und strengen damit den bislang größten Haftpflichtprozess in einem EU-Land an, bei dem durch Umweltvergiftung geschädigte ausländische Kläger am Sitz eines multinationalen Konzerns auf Schadenersatz klagen. Die Geschichte begann vor 35 Jahren [...] [bevor] die Baselkonvention, die solche Exporte verbietet [...] in Kraft [trat]... [D]ie Slumviertel von Arica breiteten sich im Laufe der Jahre bis zum Rand der Giftmüllberge aus... Die 796 chilenischen KlägerInnen, die von den AnwältInnen kostenlos vertreten werden und deren Krankengeschichten dem Gericht vorliegen, fordern als Entschädigung für Krankheiten, Behinderungen und chronische Schmerzen von Boliden umgerechnet je 12.500 Euro, knapp 10 Millionen Euro insgesamt... [D]er Metallkonzern [teilt] mit, [man habe] mit der seinerzeitigen Übernahme des Mülls durch Promel [...] mit diesem nichts mehr zu tun gehabt... Einen Vergleichsvorschlag lehnte der Konzern ab. Zudem beruft er sich nun auf Verjährungsfristen im schwedischen Recht. Nach chilenischer Rechtslage sind etwaige Schadenersatzforderungen nicht verjährt. Der schwedische Staat, der den Export genehmigte, sieht sich auch nicht in der Pflicht. 

Documentary film director testifies as a witness in Swedish lawsuit against Boliden over allegations of firm dumping toxic waste in Chile

18 Oct 2017 — "Film director in court as landmark legal case begins",  16 Oct 2017 [Lars Edman, the  Swedish film director of multi-award winning documentary, TOXIC PLAYGROUND] has been summoned to appear as a witness in a land-mark trial beginning on Tueday October 17th in...Sweden.  The case against Swedish mining corporation Boliden has been brought by Arica Victims KB, a newly formed Swedish company representing 796 Chileans from Arica who have suffered from multiple health problems since toxic waste was dumped in their town in1985. Edman and his co-director William Johansson exposed the case of the Arica Victims in their multi-award winning documentary, TOXIC PLAYGROUND which prompted Lewis Gordon, executive director of the Enivronmental Law Defender Centre in the USA to begin a collaboration with a Swedish legal team led by attorney Johan Oberg.  ...The court will watch evidence from over 30 hours of material filmed during the production of Toxic Playground, featuring the Boliden employee responsible for allowing the toxic waste to leave Sweden. The trial is set to continue for the next eight weeks.

Chile: Informe académico señala abusos de derechos humanos por empresas sanitarias y de servicios para menores infractores

17 Oct 2017 — “Informe Anual sobre Derechos Humanos en Chile 2017” …Derecho al agua, emergencias y responsabilidades del estado y de las empresas sanitarias: La falta de prevención en la garantía del derecho humano al agua potable ha significado, en los últimos años, cortes significativos de ese servicio para los usuarios…en un contexto en el que…la obligación de garantizar el derecho está repartida entre una Superintendencia y la empresa estatal, ECONSSA S.A. Debido al carácter económico, naturalmente monopólico, que envuelve a la industria de agua potable, es fundamental que la normativa, la fiscalización, el acceso a la justicia y las instituciones relacionadas con su abastecimiento a la población, propendan a que las empresas concesionarias de este recurso, estatales y privadas, den cumplimiento a sus planes de inversión. Sename: el rol del estado, la tutela judicial de niños, niñas y adolescentes y la relevancia penal de la crisis: Entre los años 2005 y 2016, 1.313 niños, niñas, adolescentes y mayores de 18 años murieron en centros del SENAME o en organismos colaboradores autorizados por ese servicio. En esos lugares existen, de manera extendida, prácticas sistemáticas de violencia física, psíquica y sexual…Los colaboradores privados progresivamente han adquirido un papel predominante en la prestación encargada al SENAME. En efecto, en la actualidad, la abrumadora mayoría de las atenciones de dicho servicio son prestadas directamente por aquellos. De acuerdo a información del Ministerio de Justicia, al año 2015, los privados proveían el 96.18% de los servicios, mientras que solo el 3.82% está a cargo de centros de administración directa del SENAME,39 siendo marginal su actividad, como precisamente el legislador lo ha establecido... 

Chile: Full text of Natl. Action Plan on business & human rights released

3 Oct 2017 — “National Action Plan on Business and Human Rights Chile” This Action Plan is a first effort to imbed the Principles within the national reality, in line with the international commitment made by Chile regarding this matter. It aims at throwing a light upon what is understood by human rights in a business environment and is also a platform to identify, prevent, address, mitigate and redress pair the adverse impact that business enterprises may cause during their activities…Furthermore, who hope it becomes a tool to promote knowledge and foster new opportunities to gather among stakeholders by facilitating the road to encourage a culture of respect for human rights in the business industry….The above is consistent with the need to promote in our country a robust and competitive business environment, which is ready to face global challenges. President Bachelet expressed this will during her visit to Sweden in 2016 when she highlighted the execution of the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, through this first National Action Plan……[Refers to: Enap, Codelco, Arica Port Company, Iquique Port Company, Antofagasta Port Company, Coquimbo Port Company, Valparaíso Port Company, San Antonio Port Company, Talcahuano Port Company - San Vicente, Puerto Montt Port Company, Chacabuco Port Company, Austral Port Company, Casa Moneda S.A., Correos Chile, Cotrisa S.A., Econssa S.A., Enacar S.A., Lake Peñuelas S.A., Polla S.A., Sacor SpA, Sasipa SpA, Zofri S.A., Company of State Railways, Metro S.A.]