Potosi Department
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Potosi Department
Department of Potosí
Flag of Department of Potosí
Coat of arms of Department of Potosí
Coat of arms
Location within Bolivia
Location within Bolivia
Coordinates: 20°40?0?S 66°40?0?W / 20.66667°S 66.66667°W / -20.66667; -66.66667
Country Bolivia
 o GovernorOmar Veliz Ramos
 o Total118,218 km2 (45,644 sq mi)
 o Total823,517
 o Density7.0/km2 (18/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC-4 (BOT)
HDI (2017)0.559[1]
medium · 9th

Potosí (Spanish pronunciation: [poto'si]; Aymara: Putusi; Quechua: P'utuqsi) is a department in southwestern Bolivia. It comprises 118,218 km2 with 823,517 inhabitants (2012 census). The capital is the city of Potosí. It is mostly a barren, mountainous region with one large plateau to the west, where the largest salt flat in the world, Salar de Uyuni, is located.

Cerro Potosí was the richest province in the Spanish empire, providing a great percentage of the silver that was shipped to Europe.

Potosi is also the location of the San Cristóbal silver, zinc and lead mines, developed by the US-company Apex Silver Mines Limited of Colorado and in November 2008 sold to the Japanese Sumitomo Corporation.


The chief executive office of Bolivia departments (since May 2010) is the governor; until then, the office was called the prefect, and until 2006 the prefect was appointed by the President of Bolivia. The current governor, Esteban Urquizu Cuéllar of the Movement for Socialism - Political Instrument for the Sovereignty of the Peoples was elected on 4 April 2010.

Date Began Date Ended Prefect/Governor Party Notes
23 Jan 2006 30 May 2010 Mario Virreira Iporre MAS-IPSP First elected prefect. Elected in Bolivian general election, December 2005
30 May 2010 31 May 2015 Félix Gonzáles MAS-IPSP Elected in regional election on 4 April with 63.1% of the vote; first governor
30 May 2010 31 May 2015 Juan Carlos Cejas MAS-IPSP Elected in regional election on 29 March.[2]

Legislative Assembly

Under the 2009 Constitution, each Bolivian department has an elected Departmental Legislative Assembly. The first elections were held 4 April 2010.

Provinces of Potosi Department

The department is divided into 16 provinces which are further subdivided into 40 municipalities [3] (municipios) and 219 cantons (cantones).

Province Capital Area km2 Population
(2012 census)
Map Number
POTOSI 15.png
Alonso de Ibáñez Sacaca 2.170 29.821 1
Antonio Quijarro Uyuni 14,890 54,947 12
Bernardino Bilbao Arampampa 640 10,224 2
Charcas San Pedro de Buena Vista 2,964 41,214 3
Chayanta Colquechaca 7,026 97,251 5
Cornelio Saavedra Betanzos 2,375 55,100 7
Daniel Campos Llica 12,106 5,850 13
Enrique Baldivieso San Agustín 2,254 1,684 15
José María Linares Puna 5,136 49,619 8
Modesto Omiste Villazón 2,260 44,645 11
Nor Chichas Cotagaita 8,979 42,248 9
Nor Lípez Colcha K 20,892 14,057 14
Rafael Bustillo Uncía 2,235 86,947 4
Sud Chichas Tupiza 8,516 55,879 10
Sud Lípez San Pablo de Lípez 22,355 6,835 16
Tomás Frías Potosí 3,420 229,047 6


Language Department Bolivia
Quechua 514,421 2,281,198
Aymara 57,738 1,525,321
Guaraní 374 62,575
Another native 356 49,432
Spanish 438,204 6,821,626
Foreign 3,771 250,754
Only native 226,967 960,491
Native and Spanish 301,280 2,739,407
Spanish and foreign 136,980 4,115,751

The languages spoken in the department are mainly Quechua, Spanish and Aymara. The following table shows the number of those belonging to the recognized group of speakers.[4]

Places of interest

Notable people

See also


  1. ^ "Sub-national HDI - Area Database - Global Data Lab". hdi.globaldatalab.org. Retrieved .
  2. ^ "Bolivia Departments since 2006". worldstatesmen.org. Retrieved 2017.
  3. ^ www.bolivia.com (English)
  4. ^ obd.descentralizacion.gov.bo Archived 2009-02-18 at the Wayback Machine (Spanish)

External links

Coordinates: 20°40?S 66°40?W / 20.667°S 66.667°W / -20.667; -66.667

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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