Arica y Parinacota Region

The Arica y Parinacota Region[3][4] (Spanish: Región de Arica y Parinacota pronounced [aˈɾika i paɾinaˈkota])[5] is one of Chile's 16 first order administrative divisions. It comprises two provinces, Arica and Parinacota. It borders Peru's Department of Tacna to the north, Bolivia's La Paz and Oruro departments to the east and Chile's Tarapacá Region to the south. Arica y Parinacota is the 5th smallest, the 3rd least populous and the 6th least densely populated of the regions of Chile. Arica is the region's capital and largest city.

Arica y Parinacota Region
Región de Arica y Parinacota
Parinacota Volcano and Chungará Lake
Flag of Arica y Parinacota Region
Coat of Arms of Arica y Parinacota Region
Map of Arica y Parinacota Region
Map of Arica y Parinacota Region
Coordinates: 18°28′30″S 70°18′52″W / 18.47500°S 70.31444°W / -18.47500; -70.31444Coordinates: 18°28′30″S 70°18′52″W / 18.47500°S 70.31444°W / -18.47500; -70.31444
Country Chile
ProvincesArica, Parinacota
 • IntendantRoberto Erpel (UDI)
 • Total16,873.3 km2 (6,514.8 sq mi)
 • Rank12
Highest elevation6,342 m (20,807 ft)
Lowest elevation
0 m (0 ft)
 • Total224,548
 • Rank14
 • Density13/km2 (34/sq mi)
ISO 3166 codeCL-AP
HDI (2019)0.882[2]
very high (in Spanish)

The region was a former Peruvian province, which was occupied by Chile under the 1883 Treaty of Ancón at the close of the War of the Pacific, and then formally annexed in 1929 by the Treaty of Lima. Following annexation, Arica y Parinacota went through a process of forced acculturation known as Chilenization with the aim of creating a dominance of Chilean traditions and culture.


In 2007, the region was subdivided to create the Arica y Parinacota region and the present day Tarapacá Region to the south. The region is further subdivided into two provinces: Arica and Parinacota.

Region Province Commune Area
Arica y Parinacota
Camarones 3,927 1,220 link
Arica 4,799 185,268 link Archived 21 September 2010 at the Wayback Machine
Putre 5,903 1,977 link
General Lagos 2,244 1,179 link


According to data from the 2017 Census of the National Statistics Institute, the region is populated by 224,548 inhabitants. Its density reaches 13.3 inhabitants per km ².

This region holds the largest population of Aymara[9] and a significant number of immigrants from neighboring Peru and Bolivia.[10] Included are those of Asian descent, such as Chinese and Japanese; and Arabs from Lebanon, Palestine and Syria. Most of the country's Afro-Chileans live in the Arica province, descended from slaves in the 17th and 18th centuries.[11] There are a large number of Roma people or Gypsies in the Arica province as well, originated from Eastern Europe in the late 19th century.[12]

At the level of cities, the most populated are: Arica, with 175,441 inhabitants and Putre, with 1235 inhabitants.


The region lies within the Norte Grande (Far North) natural region. It combines deserts, green valleys, the steep and volcanic Andes mountains, and the Altiplano (high plain) to the east. A narrow coastal strip of low-lying land no more than 2 kilometres (1 mi) wide separates the Pacific's Nazca plate from the Andes. Its Parinacota volcano is the region's highest elevation at 6,348 metres (20,827 ft) and lies on the northern border with Bolivia in Lauca National Park.


The region's two main rivers are the Lauca, which drains into Bolivia's Coipasa salt flat (Lago Coipasa), and the Lluta, which flows into the Pacific Ocean. Lake Chungará at 4,517 metres (14,820 ft) above sea level ranks as one of the highest in the world.[1]


A desert climate dominates the region. Near the coast, cloudiness can limit the temperature swing throughout the day, but in other drier areas, temperatures can vary greatly as is typical in deserts. A marginal desert region can be found over 3,000 m (9,843 ft) above sea level, which sees milder temperatures and summer rains.[1]

Border dispute with PeruEdit

Maritime claims of Ecuador and Peru, showing areas in dispute with Chile.
The maritime boundary between Chile and Peru as defined by the International Court of Justice on 27 January 2014.

On 26 January 2007, Peru's government issued a protest against Chile's demarcation of the coastal frontier the two countries share. According to the Peruvian Foreign Ministry, the Chilean legislatures had endorsed a plan regarding the Arica y Parinacota region which did not comply with the current established territorial demarcation. Moreover, it is alleged that the proposed Chilean law included an assertion of sovereignty over 19,000 m2 (204,514 sq ft) of land in Peru's Department of Tacna. According to the Peruvian Foreign Ministry, Chile has defined a new region "without respecting the Concordia demarcation."[13]

For its part, the Chilean government has asserted that the region in dispute is not a coastal site named Concordia, but instead refers to boundary stone No. 1, which is located to the northeast and 200 meters inland.[13] A possible border dispute was averted when the Chilean Constitutional Court formally ruled on 26 January 2007, against the legislation. While agreeing with the court's ruling, the Chilean government reiterated its stance that the maritime borders between the two nations were not in question and have been formally recognized by the international community.[14] The Peruvian government has stated that it might turn to the international court at The Hague to solve the dispute.[15]

On 27 January 2014, in the final ruling of the International Court of Justice located in The Hague, Peru gained some maritime territory. The maritime boundary extends only to 80 nautical miles off of the coast. From that point, the new border runs in a southwest direction to a point that is 200 miles equidistant from the coast of the two countries.

Under the ruling, Chile lost control over part of its formerly claimed maritime territory and gives additional maritime territory to Peru.

From the 27 January 2014 court press release:

The Court concludes that the maritime boundary between the Parties starts at the intersection of the parallel of latitude passing through Boundary Marker No. 1 with the low-water line, and extends for 80 nautical miles along that parallel of latitude to Point A. From this point, the maritime boundary runs along the equidistance line to Point B, and then along the 200-nautical-mile limit measured from the Chilean baselines to Point C. In view of the circumstances of the case, the Court has defined the course of the maritime boundary between the Parties without determining the precise geographical co-ordinates.[16][17]

Notable peopleEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b c d "Arica-Parinacota Region". Government of Chile Foreign Investment Committee. Retrieved 13 March 2010.[permanent dead link]
  2. ^ "Sub-national HDI – Area Database – Global Data Lab". Retrieved 26 October 2021.
  3. ^ "Iglesias de Arica Parinacota (Churches of Arica Parinacota)". New York, NY: World Monuments Fund. Retrieved 26 July 2012. However, San Pedro de Esquiña, like many other churches in the Arica y Parinacota region, is at risk.
  4. ^ "Journalists and media professionals to participate in awareness-raising workshop on violence against women in Arica". UNESCO. 18 May 2011. Retrieved 26 July 2012. [...] several women’s public organizations and agencies from the Chilean region of Arica y Parinacota.
  5. ^ "Ley 20175. Crea la XV Región de Arica y Parinacota y la Provincia del Tamarugal en la Región de Tarapacá". Ley Chile (in Spanish). Valparaiso, Chile: Biblioteca del Congreso Nacional de Chile. 11 April 2007. Retrieved 26 July 2012.
  6. ^ a b "National Statistics Institute" (in Spanish). Retrieved 30 December 2010.
  7. ^ a b "Territorial division of Chile" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 14 November 2010. Retrieved 30 December 2010.
  8. ^ "Asociacion Chilena de Municipalidades" (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 19 April 2011. Retrieved 7 February 2011.
  9. ^[bare URL PDF]
  10. ^ "Estadísticas Migratorias".
  11. ^ "Africana – Memoria Chilena, Biblioteca Nacional de Chile".
  12. ^[bare URL PDF]
  13. ^ a b "Peru protests against Chile's new definition of territory". Xinhua People's Daily online. Retrieved 27 January 2007.
  14. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 29 January 2007. Retrieved 28 January 2007.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  15. ^ "Peru-Chile Sea Dispute May Go to The Hague". Lima: Prensa Latina. 27 January 2007. Archived from the original on 25 October 2008. Retrieved 28 January 2007.
  16. ^ CORDER, MIKE (27 January 2014). "World court draws new Peru-Chile maritime border". Associated Press. Retrieved 27 January 2014.
  17. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2 February 2014. Retrieved 30 April 2018.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)

External linksEdit