Costa Rica country brief

Australia and Costa Rica enjoy a warm relationship based on trade and international cooperation.

Key engagement

Costa Rica is Australia's second largest trading partner in Central America.

Outlook

Trade potential exists in a number of sectors, including renewable energy and professional services.

Bilateral relations

Australia and Costa Rica established diplomatic relations in 1974. Costa Rica opened an Embassy in Canberra in 2017 and has a consulate in Sydney. Australia’s Ambassador to Mexico hold non-resident accreditation to Costa Rica and Australia has an Honorary Consul in San José.

Foreign relations

Costa Rica is a member of the Organisation of American States, the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) and the Central American Integration System (SICA).

It is an observer of the Pacific Alliance and has indicated interest in becoming a member.

Australia and Costa Rica both participate in the Cairns Group of agricultural exporting countries, the Forum for East Asia-Latin America Cooperation (FEALAC) and the WTO Trade in Services Agreement negotiations.

Australia’s foreign policy is guided by the Foreign Policy White Paper.

Fast Facts

  • Costa Rican visitors to Australia (2017) — 900
  • Australian visitors to Costa Rica (primary destination 2017)* — 2,200
  • Resident Australian population born in Costa Rica (2016) — 400
  • Australian residents of Costa Rican descent (2016) — 400
  • Costa Rican students in Australia (2017) — 50

High level engagement

  • 2017 September — Costa Rican Foreign Minister Manuel Gonzalez visited Canberra to open the Costa Rican embassy. 

Australian Embassy in Mexico

Ruben Dario 55
Col. Polanco
Mexico City 11580
Tel: 52-55-11012200
General: australianembassy.mexico@dfat.gov.au
Facebook: Australia en México, Centroamérica, Cuba y      República Dominicana
Twitter: @AusEmbMex

 

Economic diplomacy

Costa Rica is eligible for the Endeavour Leadership Program. Under the previous Endeavour Mobility Grants and Endeavour Scholarships and Fellowships programs, three Costa Ricans have been offered opportunities to undertake study, research and professional development in Australia and ten Australians have been offered opportunities to undertake a study experience in Costa Rica.

In 2018, the Council on Australia-Latin America Relations (COALAR) provided a grant to Somos21 Limited to connect and collaborate with people and institutions in Costa Rica.

Through the Direct Aid Program, the Australian Government provides financial support to a range of projects in Costa Rica. In 2017-18, the Direct Aid Program supported an employability program for young women in vulnerable situations and market linkage strategies for small producers in vulnerable areas.

Further economic and trade information can be found in our Economic Factsheet for Costa Rica.

Business

Opportunities exist for Australian business in the education, agriculture, information technology and communications, and infrastructure development.

Travel

* Costa Rica reports the number of Australian visitors as 13,500 in 2016 (Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería).

Last Updated: 4 February 2019