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Trip PlannerSouth America  /  Bolivia  /  Potosi Department

Potosi Department

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Geologic Formations · Specialty Museums · Bodies of Water
Potosí Department 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.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.GovernmentThe 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.Legislative AssemblyUnder the 2009 Constitution, each Bolivian department has an elected Departmental Legislative Assembly. The first elections were held 4 April 2010.
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