The country covers an area of 677,000 square
kilometres (261,228 square miles) ranging 936 kilometres (581 miles)
from east to west and 2,051 kilometres (1,275 miles) from north to
south, It is a land of hills and valleys and is rimmed in the north,
east and west by mountain ranges forming a giant horseshoe. Enclosed
within the mountain barriers are the flat lands of Ayeyarwaddy,
Chindwin and Sittaung River valleys where most of the country's
agricultural land and population are concentrated.
The length of contiguous frontier is 6,159 kilometres.
The total length of Myanmar-Bangladesh boundary is 271 kilometres
(168.7 miles). The total length of Myanmar-China boundary is 2,204
kilometres (1,370 miles); Myanmar-Thailand 2,107 kilometres (1,309.8
miles); Myanmar-India 1,338 kilometres (831.8 miles); and
Myanmar-Laos 238 kilometres (147.9 miles)
The Union of Myanmar is made up of
135 national races, of which the main national races are Kachin,
Kayah, Kayin, Chin, Bamar, Mon, Rakhine and Shan. Populations of the
country is estimateted at 52.4 million (July, 2003) and the
populations growth rate is 1.84 percent.
The main religions of the country are
Buddhism (89.2%), Christianity (5.0%), Islam (3.8%), Hinduism
(0.5%), Spiritualism (1.2%) and others (0.2%). Over 100,000
Buddhist monks live in monasteries throughout the country.