Child labour by sector (ages 5 to 17)

Source:Encuesta de Actividades de Niños, Niñas y Adolescentes, 2012

6.6% of children aged 5 to 17 are in child labour. Most often, child labour is found in commerce (45.2%) and agriculture (21.6%). However, child labour in agriculture rises to 69.3% in rural areas.

70.6% of children in child labour aged 5 to 17 are engaged in hazardous child labour. Children are also involved in other worst forms of child labour, including commercial sexual exploitation, sometimes as a result of human trafficking. Indigenous children and adolescents from Ecuador are especially vulnerable to human trafficking for labour exploitation in Chile. Commonly, children are forced to steal, produce, sell, and transport drugs near the border with Peru and Bolivia.

Boys are more than twice as likely to be involved in child labour than girls (9.5% versus 3.9%).

Child labour by gender

Child labour by gender
Source:Encuesta de Actividades de Niños, Niñas y Adolescentes, 2012



Chile creates a National Intersectorial Table on Trafficking in Persons.


Chile sets up a National Advisory Committee for the Elimination of Child Labour and the Protection of Adolescent Workers.


Update of a National Action Plan against Trafficking in Persons (2015-2018)


The Chilean government establishes the National Strategy to Eradicate Child Labour and Protection of Adolescent Workers and updates the National Action Plan against Trafficking in Persons.


Chile develops a National Action Plan on Business and Human Rights and updates its list of hazardous occupations prohibited for children, trains labour inspectors and develops a child labour inspection manual.


  • Promote research and knowledge-sharing around SDG Target 8.7. Qualitative and quantitative studies ensure that data is generated and updated, while strengthening comprehensive lines of action around SDG Target 8.7. With support from UNICEF and the ILO, the country is taking steps toward implementing a new National Survey on Activities of Children and Adolescents in 2020.
  • Sensitize, raise awareness, and inform the general public about the challenges of the SDG Target 8.7. Training plans should be developed, which facilitate awareness- raising and information-sharing on SDG Target 8.7. Social dialogue that incorporates the challenges of SDG Target 8.7 in tripartite fora should be undertaken.
  • Create and modify procedural instruments to improve the prevention, detection, and management of cases of the violation of rights associated with SDG Target 8.7. An early warning system to prevent cases of risk of violation of rights associated with SDG Target 8.7 should be developed. In addition, the instruments for detection and referral of cases need to be strengthened and updated.
  • Evaluate and promote legal and regulatory modifications that strengthen the prevention and protection of rights associated with SDG Target 8.7. Procedures should be established for the referral of cases in the “Protocol for dealing with victims of human trafficking” and other protection protocols. Moreover, relevant national legislation should be reviewed, and required changes should be made, with respect to SDG Target 8.7.


Child Labour

  • Chile increased inter-sectoral coordination, by:
    • Establishing a commission for the prevention and elimination of Child Labour and inter-sectoral roundtables against Child Labour and Human trafficking.
    • Establishing a strategic alliance with business networks for children.
    • Incorporating new members to the Inter-sectoral Table on Trafficking in Persons that can offer targeted assistance to victims with a particular focus: children and adolescents, trafficking in crisis and emergency situations and trafficking in persons with disabilities.
    • Actively engaging with regional bodies on the prevention and eradication of child labour and through the intersectoral roundtable on trafficking in persons.
  • Chile has been named by the Department of State of the United States Government, again (seventh consecutive year) as a country that complies with the minimum standards for the elimination of human trafficking, in accordance with the TVPA Act of the United States and the UN Palermo Protocol. The group of countries that meet these standards are defined in the “Trafficking in Persons Report 2020” at Level 1 known as TIER 1.
  • Along with the Memorandum of Understanding on Trafficking in Persons in force with Ecuador, Chile has an Agreement in force with Peru and Memorandums of Understanding with Argentina and Colombia on prevention, investigation and protection of victims of trafficking in persons.
  • Through the incorporation of Chile as a Pathfinder Country of the Alliance 8.7, public policies associated with the prevention and eradication of child labour and human trafficking converged, and synergies and gaps have been identified.
  • Chile is increasing capacity and awareness on child labour, forced labour, and human trafficking through a series of national and regional workshops, awareness raising activities, including, among others, the launch of the national Campaigns “Chile sin trabajo infantil” and #ChileSinTrata and several regional activities on the occasion of the World Day Against Child Labour.
  • Chile has increased training on child labour, forced labour and human trafficking for civil servants, Government officials, the police, educators and others.


Human Trafficking

  • At the international level, Chile played an active part in increasing international cooperation on the subjects of Child Labour, Forced Labour and Human trafficking in the following manner:
    • Under the framework of the “Memorandum of Understanding on Prevention, Investigation and Protection of Victims of Trafficking in Persons” between the Ministries of the Interior of Chile and Ecuador, a Binational Road Map was established to exchange good practices regarding the prevention of trafficking of children and adolescents.
    • Technical assistance was given to Paraguay on the implementation of the national strategy for the eradication of child labour and protection of adolescent workers 2015-2025
    • Active participation in the Regional Initiative Latin America and Caribbean Free of Child Labour
    • Workshops were organised with the financial support of the Chilean international cooperation agency on the detection and referral of victims of human trafficking in Central America
  • Chile presented a draft law to update the regulations on the hiring of children and adolescents. It focuses on their rights, includes maximum daily working hours and an increase in the fine for failing to request an aptitude test for mining work for persons under 22 years of age.
  • Chile has developed a strategy to generate labour opportunities for families with children in child labour.
  • Chile is increasing its knowledge base on child labour, forced labour, and human trafficking through:
    • Collaboration with Academic Institutions (to encourage students at the University to prepare undergraduate theses or research work on child labour), with the Andrés Bello University, Santo Tomas University, Finis Terrae University and with ECLAC (United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean).
    • The development of the national survey on children and adolescent activities (to be implemented in 2021) and the annual update and publication of statistical information on trafficking in persons.


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“As a country, we have committed to being a country free of child labour, free of human trafficking by 2025. However, in order to reach this goal, which is a very ambitious goal, it is not enough to maintain the status quo – we must do much more. ‘Children first’ is more than a phrase – it has content, it has a soul, and as long as we all make it our own, we will have a much more just, more supportive country.”

Mr. Fernando Arab, Under-Secretary of Labour
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