Information on the procedures, costs and delays in changing a telephone number [CHL26260.E]

The information that follows was obtained during a 10 February 1997 telephone interview with a representative at a business office (oficina comercial) of the Compañía de Telecomunicaciones de Chile Sociedad Anónima (S.A.), the company that provides telephone services in Chile.

A business or residential customer can request a change of telephone number at any business office of the telephone company by mail, fax or in person, explaining the reason why this change is required. The telephone company has business offices in every region of Santiago and in every large city of the country. The cost for changing a telephone number is the same for business as for residential customers: 22,763 pesos (value-added tax or IVA included). Please refer to the bottom of this Response to Information Request for an approximate equivalent in Canadian dollars.

The speed with which a line number can be changed will depend on the availability of lines and the circumstances of the request. In Santiago there is no shortage of lines, so there will likely be no delay in assigning a new number. Although it normally takes one or two days to change a number, in urgent cases —such as when a customer is being subjected to threatening or harassing calls— the number can be changed the same day. Some regions (sometimes referred to as provinces) have a more developed telephone systems than do others, and although the procedure for changing a telephone number is the same as in Santiago, the availability of lines varies and in some cases may delay a change (for example, in some regions a change might require reassigning another customer's number). Although each region's business offices can address the specific situation of their area, the Santiago-based source stated that as a general rule urgent situations would be dealt with promptly.

For your reference, the exchange rate for the Chilean peso in Ottawa on 11 February 1997 is, according to a foreign currency trader: 0.002785 for conversion of pesos into Canadian dollars (or Ch$1,000 to buy CN$2.79), and 0.003585 for conversion of Canadian dollars into pesos (or CN$3.59 to buy Ch$1,000) (11 Feb. 1997). The above-cited amount of Ch$22,763 would thus roughly range from CN$63.40 (if buying Canadian dollars with that many pesos in Ottawa) to CN$81.60 (if buying that amount of pesos with dollars in Ottawa) (ibid.).

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the DIRB within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum.


Compañía de Telecomunicaciones de Chile S.A., Santiago. 10 February 1997. Telephone interview with business office representative.

Foreign currency dealer, Currencies International, McDonald-Cartier International Airport, Ottawa. 11 February 1997. Telephone interview.