Indigenous peoples in Guatemala

60 percent of Guatemala's population is made up of indigenous peoples - more than 6 million inhabitants.  

The indigenous population continue to lag behind the non-indigenous population in social statistics: they are 2.8 times poorer and have 13 years’ less life expectancy; meanwhile, only 5 percent of university students are indigenous.

The human development report from 2008 indicates that 73 percent of the indigenous population are poor (as opposed to 35 percent of the non-indigenous population), and 26 percent are extremely poor.

Indigenous participation in the country’s economy as a whole accounts for 61.7 percent of output, as opposed to 57.1 percent for the non-indigenous population.

Guatemala voted in favour of the UN Declaration on Rights of Indigenous Peoples in 2007 and ratified ILO Convention 169 in 1996.

Indigenous peoples in Guatemala 

  • Achi’
  • Akateco
  • Awakateco
  • Chalchiteco
  • Ch’orti’
  • Chuj
  • Itza’
  • Ixil
  • Jacalteco
  • Kaqchikel
  • K’iche’
  • Mam
  • Mopan
  • Poqomam
  • Poqomchi’
  • Q’anjob’al
  • Q’eqchi’
  • Sakapulteco
  • Sipakapense
  • Tektiteko
  • Tz’utujil
  • Uspanteko
  • Xinka
  • Garífuna

Yearly update

Download the 2016 yearbook article on indigenous peoples in Guatemala to learn about major developments and events during 2015.