Chilean Antarctic Territory
Antarctica is a continent of extremes: one of the most isolated, coldest, windiest, dryest and consecuently, the least populated. It represents the largest reserve of water in the world, containing 90 percent of the planet’s ice.
The landscape, wildlife and marine life are main tourist attractions. This is one of the few places in the world that remain untouched by mankind, and it is one of the most world's most important Biosphere Reserves.
The Chilean Antarctic Territory or Chilean Antarctica is the territory in Antarctica claimed by Chile. This Territory ranges from 53° West to 90° West and from the South Pole to the 60° South parallel, partially overlapping the Argentine and British Antarctic claims and creating the eastern border of Westarctica. It is administered by the Cabo de Hornos municipality in the South American mainland.
The territory claimed by Chile covers the South Shetland Islands, Antarctic Peninsula and adjacent islands, Alexander Island, Charcot Island, and part of the Ellsworth Land, among others. It has an area of 1,250,257.6 km².
The Antarctic Continent, and the bases installed there, are natural reserves dedicated to peace and scientific investigation. For this very reason, all activities that take place here, tourist activity included, is done under very strict rules, to maintain its cleanliness and avoid environmental contamination. All 45 countries which are part of the Antarctic Treaty are subject to these rules. Chile amongst them.
Scientific undertakings rather than commercial pursuits are the predominate human activity in Antarctica.
There are four permanent Chilean bases operating throughout the year, while there are five that remain open only during the summer (December – March) with four shelters.
The largest population center is located in King George Island and is formed by the Presidente Eduardo Frei Montalva naval base, which has an airstrip, the President Frei meteorological center and the Villa Las Estrellas. Belonging to Chile, this enclave is the nucleus of more important logistical support to the remaining countries that operate scientific bases on King George Island.
The Chilean Antarctic Institute (INACH) under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, opened on the same island and is the chief scientific center of Chile in Antarctica.
Fishing off the coast and tourism, account for Antarctica's limited economic activity. Antarctic fisheries, target three main species - Patagonian and Antarctic toothfish (Dissostichus eleginoides and D. mawsoni), mackerel icefish