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The origins of the Duty Free Zone are found in DFL No. 6 of 1969, signed by President of the Republic Eduardo Frei Montalva and Minister for Finance Andrés Zaldívar Larraín.

On January 25th, 1973, under the government of Salvador Allende, the Superintendency of Corporations passed resolution No. 30 which resulted in the Sociedad Administradora y Operadora de Zonas Francas S.A. Then, on August 3rd of the same year, the Duty Free Zone Oversight Board was created, led by Mr. Alejandro Soria Varas, and established by representatives of Customs, Internal Revenue Service, the Central Bank, and users.

Two years later, in June 1975, Iquique Duty Free Zone (ZOFRI) started operations. It was created as a State response to the demographic and geopolitical need of having a strong social and economic development hub in northern Chile (Decree Law No. 1,055). It started operations in a small warehouse rented in Patricio Lynch Street, at La Puntilla neighborhood, in Iquique.

In 1978, ZOFRI moved operations to El Colorado neighborhood, by then a sandy area used as dump. Public warehouses, warehouses in the Walled Premises, administration offices, located in the Convention Building, and ZOFRI Mall were built after some years. 

At the beginning, Iquique Duty Free Zone was managed by ZOFRI Administration and Oversight Board, which ended operations on November 8th 1989 by publishing Law No. 18,846 in the Official Journal, authorizing State company activity in terms of the Administration and Exploitation of Iquique Duty Free Zone. The new legal regulation required the Treasury and CORFO to establish a corporation called “Zona Franca de Iquique S.A.” (ZOFRI S.A.), governed by the regulations of listed corporations and under the control and inspection of the Chilean Security and Exchange Commission and, given its stock ownership, also controlled and inspected by the Comptroller General of the Republic.

Such corporation was incorporated on February 26th, 1990, and on September 29th of the same year, the concession contract was executed in terms of the Administration and Exploitation of Iquique Duty Free Zone, which duration was agreed for 40 years. 

Over two thousand user companies currently operate in Iquique Duty Free Zone, distributed in Walled Premises I and II, the Industrial Neighborhood, ZOFRI Mall, Chacalluta Industrial Park (Arica), the Logistics Center, and ZOFRI Alto Hospicio Business Park, (PEZAH).

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