Chile is Latin American leader in “digital economy”

According to a ranking by The Economist, the South American country ranks 30th on a list of 70 countries.

Chile’s best evaluation came in the aspect of business environment
Chile’s best evaluation came in the aspect of business environment

Chile is the best-positioned country in Latin America in terms of “digital economy,” according to the annual study by the Economist Intelligence Unit, which is drafted by the prestigious publication The Economist and the Institute for Business Value (IBV) at IBM. The country ranked 30th on the list for a second year running, though its total points were down slightly, from 6.49 in 2009 to 6.39 this year.

The “Digital Economy rankings 2010” were elaborated considering six variables: connectivity and quality of technological infrastructure, business environment, social and cultural environment, legal regulations, government policies and the adoption of consumers and business.

Chile’s best evaluation came in the aspect of business environment, with a score of 8 out of a maximum of 10, followed by legal regulations, which received a 7.4. The area with the worst rating was connectivity and quality of technology infrastructure, with a score of 4.15.

Notwithstanding its score, Chile is the Latin American leader in all variables analyzed, followed by Mexico in 41tst place, Brazil (42), Argentina (46), Colombia (50), Peru (53), Venezuela (55) and Ecuador (60).

Sweden ranked first in the world after coming in second last year, followed by Denmark, the United States, Finland and Holland.

Cheaper broadband

The strong inroads that the Internet has been making in the country are one of the fundamental things that have allowed Chile to stand out in digital issues.

To make the web even more accessible to Chileans, this week Undersecretary for Telecommunications Jorge Atton met with Argentine experts after previously getting together with Brazilian specialists.

The point of the talks is to forge an alliance between Chile, Brazil and Argentina, in addition to Peru and Uruguay, to reduce the costs of broadband.

Currently broadband providers in Chile must pay between US$ 40 and US$ 50 per megabyte to the companies that own the underwater fiber optic cables that carry the traffic between Chile and the United States. According to Atton, OECD countries pay an average of between US$ 8 and US$ 10 for the same service.

The initiative has been endorsed by Movistar and VTR, the largest broadband operators in Chile.