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The territorial (country-coast) and economic (capitalization of resources) characteristics of Chile make the country extremely dependent on the coastal zone and resources. The level and rate of economic growth achieved in recent decades make it advisable to pay special attention to the management of coastal resources. Considerable efforts have been made in recent years to improve the national system of management of the coastal fringe. However, the progress made is still clearly insufficient. The National Policy for the Use of the Coastal Fringe, passed in 1994, details much of the progress made, but the economic and human resources that accompany the process initiated by the National Policy are very scarce. Coordination among public institutions is still a pending issue. Closer cooperation between the Ministries (of National Defence, National Goods, Housing and Urbanism, Economy, etc.) and the other territorial levels of government (regions and municipalities) would achieve significant results. In the central part of the country, tools related to land use (urbanism and land use planning) can help to slow down the deterioration of the coastal zone and associated terrestrial resources. In the new democratic period in Chile, public participation is an area that should be urgently improved. A revision of the National Policy for the Use of the Coastal Fringe and the passing of other legal tools may strengthen the process of coastal management in the coming years.