Top 10 Richest Countries In South America 2022

The richest countries in South America are also some of the most popular on the continent. Many South American countries have very good human development, and they are very well developed in industry as well. South America is growing at a very fast pace; it is the result of very careful planning over the past few decades.

The oil industry is quite prominent; it accounts for a high volume of exports made by several countries. Other important sectors through-out South America include Mining, Manufacturing, and Agriculture. Agriculture has become exceptionally well developed in South America; which has led to most of the world depending on them for many important products.

This productivity has led to the generation of consistent income; which has led to the people living a very high quality of life. 

Top 10 Richest Countries In South America 2022

1. Chile

GDP Per Capita: $28,526

Chile is in the western part of South America; it is the southernmost country in the world. Chile has a land area of 756,096 square kilometers, and a population of 17.5 million. Chile is a very stable and prosperous country; it is considered a shining example of a South American society with a rapid pace of development.

It is considered as a high-income economy, and it is also quite impressive in terms of human development, competitiveness, globalization, economic freedom, and low perception of corruption.

The economy of Chile is diversified. Mining, Agriculture, and food processing are all important sectors of the economy. Copper Ore and refined Copper are the most important products. Fruits, Wine, Canned Fish, and non packaged fish are also important exports.

To a lesser extent; agricultural products like cherry and blueberry, as well as grape, apple, kiwi, peach, wheat, maize, oats, and hemp are also important products.

2. Uruguay

GDP Per Capita: $26,662

Uruguay is a country in South America which is close to Argentina and Brazil. Uruguay covers an area of 181,034 KM2, and a population of an estimated 3.51 million people.

The Economy of Uruguay is quite diverse; there are so many different sectors contributing to the high rate of employment and industry in the country. Frozen bovine meat, Concentrated Milk, Soybeans, Rice, Malt, and Cheese are all important products coming from the agricultural sector.

The country also produces Delivery Trucks, Hides, Electricity, Chemicals, Plastics, and so on, are all quite important to the economy. The company also produces cleaning solutions, scented mixtures, and so on.

3. Argentina

GDP Per Capita: $25,822

Argentina is a country in the southern part of South America. Argentina has a land area of 2.7 million km2. Argentina has the second largest land area after Brazil. Argentina is one of the best known countries in South America; although the country is not very diverse in terms of ethnicity.

Argentina is described as having a very high rating on the Human Development Index, and when GDP per capita is considered, the country is not a poor one at all. Argentina is quite developed in terms of industry; the agriculture, mining, food processing and packaging, and other sectors are all developed.

For the Agriculture sector; Wheat, Corn, Soy Beans, Soy Oil, Meat (Beef, Mutton, Pork) and so on are all important products. Other important industries include manufacturing, such as Auto Manufacturing (Cars and Trucks), as well as their spare parts.

Argentina’s mining industry is quite important; the country produces Copper, Gold Silver and Lithium. Argentina is also a very important producer of natural gas.

4. Colombia   

GDP Per Capita: $18,225

Colombia is a country in South America with an insular region in North America. Some of its neighbors are Venezuela, Brazil, Ecuador and Peru. The capital of Colombia is Bogotá, which is also the country’s largest city.

Colombia covers an area of 1.1 million square kilometers, and the country has a population of 50 million. Colombia is culturally diverse; and the country is proud of its cultural heritage which involves influences from the Amerindian Civilizations, Europeans, Africans, as well as the more recent immigration from the Middle East.

The economy of Colombia is diverse; agriculture, industry and services are some of the most important sectors in the country. Colombia is one of the richest countries in South America because it has become one of the biggest producers of several products; thus virtually controlling the markets.

In agriculture, Colombia is one of the 5 largest producers of coffee in the world. Colombia is also one of the 10 largest producers of avocado and palm oil, and also one of the largest producers of sugarcane, banana, pineapple and cocoa.

Colombia is also an important supplier of rice, potato and cassava. The country also has a very well structures palm oil production sector; it is the most sustainable on the planet. Colombia is one of the top 20 in the world in terms of production of beef and chicken meat.

5. Brazil

GDP Per Capita: $17,207

Brazil is the biggest country in the South America; it encompasses a land area of 8.5 million square kilometers, and has a population of 214 million. The official language is Portuguese; and the capital is Brasília, while the most populous city is São Paulo. Brazil is known for its beaches, carnivals, and football which has become the country’s national identity. Brazil is also one of the most culturally and ethnically diverse nations in the world.

The economy of Brazil is quite robust and diverse; some of the important sectors include agriculture, mining, manufacturing and services. Some of the important products are soy, iron ore, maize, beef, pulp (cellulose), chicken meat, soybean meal, sugar, vehicle parts, coffee, tobacco, cotton, orange juice, footwear, airplanes, cars, gold, ethanol, semi-finished iron, among other products.

Oil is also very important to Brazil; Petrobras is one of the largest public companies in the world. Embraer, located in Brazil is also the third largest producer of civil aircraft, after Boeing and Airbus.

6. Peru

GDP Per Capita: $15,035

Peru is a country in western part of South America. The country has a population of 34 million, and a total land area of 1.28 million km2. At Peru is the 19th largest country in the world, and the third largest in South America. The country has a range of habitats; described as megadiverse, it is made up arid regions, as well as the tropical Amazon basin rainforests.

The economy of Peru is quite good; the country is classified as upper middle income country by the World Bank. The Human Development Index is classified as above average.

Some of the key exports of Peru include Copper Ore, Refined Petroleum, Zinc Ore, Lead Ore, and Iron Ore. The country also produces Gold. The Agricultural sector is also important; Beef, Chicken and other animal products are produced in large quantities, as are avocado, blueberry, artichoke and asparagus.

Peru is one of the 10 largest producers in the world of coffee and cocoa, and one of the 15 largest producers in the world of potato and pineapple. The country also produces grape, sugarcane, rice, banana, maize and cassava.

7. Paraguay

GDP Per Capita: $14,429

Paraguay is a landlocked country in South America. Some of the neighbors are Argentina, Brazil, and Bolivia. Paraguay has a population of 7 million, and the land area is 406,752 km². Paraguay’s population is mostly of mixed ancestry; and this has made it very rich culturally.

The economy is quite diversified; even though it is not the largest economy in the region, it is quite well balanced. Agriculture (Soyabeans, corn, rice, wheat, pork, and other products), Electricity, Insulated Wire, and Soy Bean Oil are also very important exports.

Production of cement, iron ore, and steel occurs throughout Paraguay; the country is quite well industrialized.

8. Ecuador

GDP Per Capita: $12,663

Ecuador is a country in northwestern South America. The name translates to country on the equator. Ecuador also includes the Galápagos Islands in the Pacific, which is about 1,000 kilometers west of the mainland. The country has a land area of 256,370 km² , and a population of 17.64 million. Ecuador has a multicultural society, with the highest part of its population being of mixed racial ancestry.

The economy of Ecuador is backed by oil production. Agriculture and tourism are also very important sectors of the economy; bananas are the biggest agricultural produce, followed by cut flowers. Processed fish and cocoa beans are also very important. Interestingly, the currency of the highest circulation in Ecuador is the US Dollar.

Ecuador plays home to several important technology development companies. Research and development are very important to the Ecuadorean economy; companies developing everything from medical, geological, banking, agriculture, and so on.

9. Bolivia

GDP Per Capita: $9,855

Bolivia is a landlocked country located in South America. Bolivia has a land area of 1.099 million km², and a population 11.67 million people. The largest city and principal industrial center is Santa Cruz, and that area is mostly flat. Bolivia is rated as a high ranking in the Human Development Index.

Bolivia’s main economic activities include agriculture, forestry, fishing, mining, and manufacturing. Bolivia is very rich in minerals, including tin, silver, lithium, and copper. Some of the goods produced in large quantities in Bolivia include textiles, clothing, refined metals, and refined petroleum.

Tourism and extraction of mineral resources are also very important sectors in the economy of Bolivia.

10. Venezuela  

GDP Per Capita: $5,949

Venezuela is a country on the northern coast of South America. The country has a land area of 916,445 km2, and its population is estimated at 28 million. Venezuela has been in the news of late; there has been extensive media coverage of the economic conditions in the country.

The economy of Venezuela is supported by oil; it accounts for nearly 85% of Venezuela’s total exports. The country also produces both hard liquor and Acyclic Alcohols. Gold is also produced, as well as fish.

Tourism is also very important; there are several natural and cultural attractions to the country. These include wildlife, waterfalls, and archaeological finds that reflect the ancient history of the region.



The richest countries in South America have established themselves as market leaders in the various markets which they control. Many South American countries have very high ratings on the human development index, and their societies are very well developed in terms of industry, terms of employment, and the level of corruption.