Chile free zones in 2021
Chile boasts three FTZs which provide excellent manufacturing infrastructure for foreign companies willing to incorporate in Chile, including i) service land ii) ready-made factory buildings and iii) export facilities. There are several incentives available for companies in Chile’s free trade zones.
Duty free zone of Iquique free trade zone (ZOFRI)
- Iquique free trade zone is Chile’s most ambitious tax-free zone. It is located the northern part of the country, with an area of 240 hectares, providing large warehouses, serviced area, and financial area;
- Companies operating in Iquiqe enjoy i) 100% exemption from corporate tax ii) 100% exemption from custom duties iii) 0% VAT on their first sales iv) and 0.8% import tax;
- This free zone invites multinationals from both commercial and industrial sectors such as imports, exports, retail, assembly, manufacturing, and industrial processing. Establishing a company in this Chile FTZ will however require sole shareholder companies to have i) at least US$5,000,000 of share capital and ii) to provide business references.
Punta Arenas free trade zone
- Punta Arenas FTZ is a tax-free zone located in Southern Chile, with a total area of 53 hectares offering and ample amount of warehouses, shopping centers, storage areas, and construction lots;
- Companies registered in this zone are eligible for i) 100% exemption from corporate tax and ii) 100% exemption from custom duties for imported goods;
- This Chile tax-free zone invites companies from both commercial and industrial sectors to conduct a diverse range of commercial and industrial activities, including i) import/export ii) retail iii) assembly iv) manufacturing and v) industrial processing.
Arica free trade zone
- The Arica Free Trade Zone is located near the border between Chile, Peru and Bolivia. Consequently, investors enjoy the convenient logistics for trading activities within the three countries;
- Companies registered in this Chile free zone are eligible for i) 100% exemption from corporate tax and ii) 100% exemption from custom duties;
- This Chile economic zone invites multinationals from the business sectors of manufacturing, exports, and minerals trading.
Table comparison of free zones
|Summary at a Glance||Iquique||Punta Arenas||Arica|
|Number of free trade zones available||1||1||1|
|Average annual Industrial space rent per 1000 sqm||US$16,000||US$12,500||US$15,000|
|How long to set the company up?||2-3 weeks||6 weeks||6 weeks|
|How long to open company bank account?||2-3 weeks||3-4 weeks||3-4 weeks|
|Quality of Utilities||Excellent||Good||Average|
|Allowed to sign sales contracts with Chilean Clients?||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Allowed to invoice Chilean Clients?||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Corporate tax payable in Chile||No||No||No|
|Corporate bank account||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Physical office space required||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Industrial space availability||Many||Limited||Limited|
|Allowed to import raw materials?||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Allowed to export goods?||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Wholly foreign owned||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Can the entity hire expatriate staff in Chile?||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Do you visit Chile for company incorporation?||No||No||No|
|Minimum number of directors||1||1||1|
|Minimum number of shareholders||2||2||2|
|Tax registration certificate required||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Individual shareholders allowed||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Corporate shareholders allowed||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Corporate director(s) allowed||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Public register of shareholders and directors||No||No||No|
|LLC company allowed||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Can apply for immigration visas||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Annual audited financial statements||No||No||No|
Frequently asked questions
How to register a company in one of Chile’s FTZs?Company formation in a free trade zone in Chile does not differ with standard procedures to incorporate a standard limited liability company in Chile. However, Healy Consultants will apply after it to the free zone authority in order to obtain user status for the free zone.
What are the requirements to incorporate in Chile Free Trade Zones?The FTZ authority will request all documents obtained during Chile company setup. Additional requirements may apply to conduct operations in some FTZ. For example, the Iquique Free Trade Zone authority requests specifically companies with a single shareholder to have over US$5,000,000 of share capital.