Latin America is the area of the Americas comprised of countries and regions where Romance languages – such as Spanish, Portuguese, and French – are predominantly spoken. Spanning Central America, the Caribbean, and South America, Latin America is comprised of 19 sovereign nations and one non-independent territory – Puerto Rico. Other countries in the region include Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama.
While Spanish, Portuguese, and French are the dominant spoken languages, English, Dutch, and Creole are also spoken in many parts of Latin America.
With a population of 664 million people, this is a multi-ethnic, multi-racial part of the world with a complex colonial history. The population of the region has a high proportion of mixed-race people, due to the colonial history of the region and influence of Europeans, indigenous people, and Africans.
Countries in Latin America are regarded as developing or emerging nations, with nations such as Argentina, Brazil, and Mexico having the largest economies. Peru and Argentina are largely market-orientated economies, while Chile has sound economic policies and one of the best credit ratings in the region. Brazil is the 12th largest economy in the world, with a GDP of $1.44 trillion (2020).