Provinces of New Caledonia

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Sorin Cosoveanu sent me a link to the results of the 2014 census (source [3]). The document is hazy about the census date. It says that the decree takes effect the day after its publication, which would be 2015-02-02. But the authenticated populations are taken into consideration counting from 2015-01-01.

"Geopolitical Entities, Names, and Codes, Edition 2" (GENC), a U.S. standard that's supposed to correspond to ISO 3166-2, was issued on 2014-03-31. It gives codes for the three provinces. They are similar to the GEC codes shown below, except that they have hyphens in the middle. The ISO online search still doesn't list any subdivisions of New Caledonia.

GEC Update 17, dated 2014-09-30, adds codes for the three provinces. One of the names it lists is "Province Îles," which may be a mistake for "Îles Loyauté."

The status of New Caledonia was changed from overseas territory to overseas country (pays d'outre-mer) by the Nouméa agreement, adopted by Parliament on 1999-02-19.

Karem Abdalla has provided me with a spreadsheet showing the areas and 1996 populations of the provinces of New Caledonia.

Country overview: 

ISO codeNC
GEC codeNC
LanguageFrench (fr)
Time zone+11


New Caledonia has been a French possession for the whole 20th century. In 1958 its status changed to territoire d'outre-mer (overseas territory). On 1959-12-27, its dependencies, the Wallis and Futuna Islands, were split from New Caledonia to become a separate overseas territory.

Other names of country: 

  1. Dutch: Nieuw Caledonië
  2. English: Territory of New Caledonia and Dependencies (formal)
  3. French: Nouvelle-Calédonie, Nouvelle-Calédonie f et Dépendances fp (formal)
  4. German: Neukaledonien n
  5. Icelandic: Nýja-Kaledónia
  6. Italian: Nuova Caledonia f
  7. Norwegian: Ny Caledonia
  8. Portuguese: Nova Caledónia f, Nova Caledônia (Brazil)
  9. Russian: Новая Каледония
  10. Spanish: Nueva Caledonia f
  11. Turkish: Yeni Kaledonya

Origin of name: 

Caledonia is a poetic name for Scotland

Primary subdivisions: 

New Caledonia is divided into three provinces.

Îles LoyautéNC.ILNC0143,5611,981765

Postal codes: 

New Caledonian postal codes are five-digit numbers beginning with 988, following the French system.

Further subdivisions:

See the Communes of New Caledonia page.

The provinces are subdivided into 33 communes.

Territorial extent: 

  1. New Caledonia consists of the large island of New Caledonia, some nearby smaller islands, and some remote tiny islands.
  2. Îles Loyauté includes Lifou, Maré, Ouvéa, Tiga, and some nearby islets.
  3. Nord includes the northern end of New Caledonia with the adjacent islands of Balabio, Baaba, Yandé, etc.; the Bélep Islands (Art, Pott, and some smaller ones); and probably the remote dependencies of Chesterfield Islands and Huon Islands.
  4. Sud includes the southern end of New Caledonia with the adjacent islands of Ouen, Hugon, Ducos, Toupéti, etc.; Île des Pins and neighboring islets; and probably the remote dependency of Walpole Island.

The UN LOCODE page  for New Caledonia lists locations in the country, some of them with their latitudes and longitudes, some with their ISO 3166-2 codes for their subdivisions. This information can be put together to approximate the territorial extent of subdivisions.

Change history: 

1946: New Caledonia census showed the colony divided into five arrondissements, plus seven dependencies, as shown. The dependencies of Futuna and Alofi and Wallis Archipelago split from New Caledonia in 1961 to form Wallis and Futuna. Isle of Pines corresponds to l'Île des Pins commune; Loyalty Islands corresponds to Îles Loyauté province; the other dependencies are still dependencies now.

Chesterfield Islandsd 
Futuna and Alofid 
Huon Islandsd 
Isle of Pinesd14
Loyalty Islandsd166
Wallis Archipelagod 
Total 49,000
  • Typ: a = arrondissement, d =
  • Population: 1946 census, counting
    Europeans only, except in the Total.
  • Source: Encyclopædia Britannica
    World Atlas, 1957 edition.


1988-11-09: New Caledonia reorganized into three provinces following a referendum. Before this date it had been divided into four provinces, formerly circonscriptions: Centre-Sud-Est (capital La Foa), Îles Loyauté, Nord, and Nouméa.

Other names of subdivisions: 

Îles Loyauté: Loyalty Islands (variant); Islas de la Lealtad (Spanish)

Population history:

Îes Loyauté10,87811,40912,24814,51815,51017,91220,87722,08017,43643,561


  1. [1] Institut de la Statistique et des Études Économiques - Nouvelle-Calédonie  (retrieved 2005-10-18).
  2. [2] Population des communes de la Nouvelle-Calédonie de 1956 à 2009 , ISEE (retrieved 2013-12-10).
  3. [3] Décret n° 2015-98 du 28 janvier 2015  authenticating the results of the 2014 census of New Caledonia (dated 2015-02-01, retrieved 2015-12-18).
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