President:Ollanta Humala (2011)Prime Minister: Pedro Cateriano (2015)Land area: 494,208 sq mi (1,279,999 sq km); total area: 496,223 sq mi (1,285,220 sq km)Population (2014 est.): 30,147,935 (growth rate: 0.99%); birth rate: 18.57/1000; infant mortality rate: 20.21/1000; life expectancy: 73.23 Capital and largest city (2011 est.): Lima, 9.13 million Other large city: Arequipa, 804,000Monetary unit: Nuevo sol (1991)Government Constitutional republic.


 Peru, in western South America, extends for nearly 1,500 mi (2,414 km) along the Pacific Ocean. Colombia and Ecuador are to the north, Brazil and Bolivia to the east, and Chile to the south. Five-sixths the size of Alaska, Peru is divided by the Andes Mountains into three sharply differentiated zones. To the west is the coastline, much of it arid, extending 50 to 100 mi (80 to 160 km) inland. The mountain area, with peaks over 20,000 ft (6,096 m), lofty plateaus, and deep valleys, lies centrally. Beyond the mountains to the east is the heavily forested slope leading to the Amazonian plains.