Myanmar 1997Myanmar

 Myanmar | | | | | |
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Crystal Travel

Myanmar - Introduction 1997
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Background: Despite multiparty elections in 1990 that resulted in the main opposition party winning a decisive victory the military junta ruling the country refused to hand over power. Key opposition leader and Nobel Peace Prize recipient AUNG San Suu Kyi was under house arrest from 1989 to 1995; her supporters are routinely harassed or jailed.

Myanmar - Geography 1997
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Location: Southeastern Asia, bordering the Andaman Sea and the Bay of Bengal, between Bangladesh and Thailand

Geographic coordinates: 22 00 N, 98 00 E

Map referenceSoutheast Asia

Total: 678,500 km²
Land: 657,740 km²
Water: 20,760 km²
Comparative: slightly smaller than Texas

Land boundaries
Total: 5,876 km
Border countries: (5) Bangladesh 193 km; , China 2,185 km; , India 1,463 km; , Laos 235 km; , Thailand 1,800 km

Coastline: 1,930 km

Maritime claims
Contiguous zone: 24 nm
Continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin
Exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Territorial sea: 12 nm

Climate: tropical monsoon; cloudy, rainy, hot, humid summers (southwest monsoon, June to September; less cloudy, scant rainfall, mild temperatures, lower humidity during winter (northeast monsoon, December to April)

Terrain: central lowlands ringed by steep, rugged highlands

Extremes lowest point: Andaman Sea 0 m
Extremes highest point: Hkakabo Razi 5,881 m

Natural resources: petroleum, timber, tin, antimony, zinc, copper, tungsten, lead, coal, some marble, limestone, precious stones, natural gas
Land use

Land use
Arable land: 15%
Permanent crops: 1%
Permanent pastures: 1%
Forests and woodland: 49%
Other: 34% (1993 est.)

Irrigated land: 10,680 km² (1993 est.)

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards: destructive earthquakes and cyclones; flooding and landslides common during rainy season (June to September; periodic droughts

Note: strategic location near major Indian Ocean shipping lanes

Myanmar - People 1997
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Population: 46,821,943 (July 1997 est.)
Growth rate: 1.81% (1997 est.)

Noun: Burmese (singular and plural)
Adjective: Burmese

Ethnic groups: Burman 68%, Shan 9%, Karen 7%, Rakhine 4%, Chinese 3%, Mon 2%, Indian 2%, other 5%

Languages: Burmese, minority ethnic groups have their own languages

Religions: Buddhist 89%, Christian 4% (Baptist 3%, Roman Catholic 1%), Muslim 4%, animist beliefs 1%, other 2%

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure
0-14 years: 37% (male 8,743,108; female 8,410,224)
15-64 years: 59% (male 13,878,541; female 13,859,783)
65 years and over: 4% (male 873,670; female 1,056,617) (July 1997 est.)

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate: 1.81% (1997 est.)

Birth rate: 29.54 births/1000 population (1997 est.)

Death rate: 11.41 deaths/1000 population (1997 est.)

Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1000 population (1997 est.)

Population distribution


Major urban areas

Current issues: deforestation; industrial pollution of air, soil, and water; inadequate sanitation and water treatment contribute to disease

Air pollutants

Sex ratio
At birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
Under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.83 male(s)/female
Total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (1997 est.)

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate: 78.5 deaths/1000 live births (1997 est.)

Life expectancy at birth
Total population: 56.62 years
Male: 54.89 years
Female: 58.45 years (1997 est.)

Total fertility rate: 3.76 children born/woman (1997 est.)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

Drinking water source

Current health expenditure

Physicians density

Hospital bed density

Sanitation facility access


Major infectious diseases

Obesity adult prevalence rate

Alcohol consumption

Tobacco use

Children under the age of 5 years underweight

Education expenditures

Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Total population: 83.1%
Male: 88.7%
Female: 77.7% (1995 est.)

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

Myanmar - Government 1997
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Country name
Conventional long form: Union of Burma
Conventional short form: Burma
Local long form: Pyidaungzu Myanma Naingngandaw (translated by the US Government as Union of Myanma and by the Burmese as Union of Myanmar)
Local short form: Myanma Naingngandaw
Former: Socialist Republic of the Union of Burma

Government type: military regime

Capital: Rangoon (regime refers to the capital as Yangon)

Administrative divisions: 7 divisions* (yin-mya, singular - yin) and 7 states (pyine-mya, singular - pyine; Chin State, Ayeyarwady*, Bago*, Kachin State, Kayin State, Kayah State, Magway*, Mandalay*, Mon State, Rakhine State, Sagaing*, Shan State, Tanintharyi*, Yangon*

Dependent areas

Independence: 4 January 1948 (from UK)

National holiday: Independence Day, 4 January (1948)

Constitution: 3 January 1974 (suspended since 18 September 1988; national convention started on 9 January 1993 to draft a new constitution; chapter headings and three of 15 sections have been approved

Legal system: does not accept compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

International law organization participation


Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch
Chief of state: Prime Minister and Chairman of the State Law and Order Restoration Council Gen. THAN SHWE (since 23 April 1992); note - the prime minister is both the chief of state and head of government
Head of government: Prime Minister and Chairman of the State Law and Order Restoration Council Gen. THAN SHWE (since 23 April 1992); note - the prime minister is both the chief of state and head of government
Cabinet: State Law and Order Restoration Council; military junta which assumed power 18 September 1988
Elections: none; the prime minister assumed power upon resignation of the former prime minister

Legislative branch: unicameral People's Assembly or Pyithu Hluttaw (485 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms)
Elections: last held 27 May 1990, but Assembly never convened
Election results: percent of vote by party - NLD 82%; seats by party - NLD 396, NUP 10, other 79

Judicial branch: limited; remnants of the British-era legal system in place, but there is no guarantee of a fair public trial; the judiciary is not independent of the executive

Political parties and leaders

International organization participation: AsDB, ASEAN (observer), CCC, CP, ESCAP, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat (nonsignatory user), Interpol, IOC, ITU, Mekong Group, NAM, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WHO, WMO, WToO, WTrO

Diplomatic representation
In the us chief of mission: Ambassador TIN WINN
In the us chancery: 2,300 S Street NW, Washington, DC 20,008
In the us telephone: [1] (202) 332-9,044, 9,045
In the us FAX: [1] (202) 332-9,046
In the us consulates general: New York
From the us chief of mission: Ambassador (vacant); Charge d'Affaires Kent M. WIEDEMANN
From the us embassy: 581 Merchant Street, Rangoon (GPO 521)
From the us mailing address: Box B, APO AP 96,546
From the us telephone: [95] (1) 282,055, 282,182 (operator assistance required)
From the us FAX: [95] (1) 280,409

Flag descriptionflag of Myanmar: red with a blue rectangle in the upper hoist-side corner bearing, all in white, 14 five-pointed stars encircling a cogwheel containing a stalk of rice; the 14 stars represent the 14 administrative divisions

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage

Myanmar - Economy 1997
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Economy overview: Burma has a mixed economy with private activity dominant in agriculture, light industry, and transport, and with substantial state-controlled activity, mainly in energy, heavy industry, and the rice trade. Government policy in the last eight years, 1989-96, has aimed at revitalizing the economy after three decades of tight central planning. Thus, private activity has markedly increased; foreign investment has been encouraged, so far with moderate success; and efforts continue to increase the efficiency of state enterprises. Published estimates of Burma's foreign trade are greatly understated because of the volume of black-market trade. A major ongoing problem is the failure to achieve monetary and fiscal stability. Although Burma remains a poor Asian country, its rich resources furnish the potential for substantial long-term increases in income, exports, and living standards.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate: 7% (1996 est.)

Real gdp per capita ppp

Gross national saving
Gdp composition by sector of origin

Gdp composition by end use

Gdp composition by sector of origin
Agriculture: 63%
Industry: 9%
Services: 28% (1995 est.)

Agriculture products: paddy rice, corn, oilseed, sugarcane, pulses; hardwood

Industries: agricultural processing; textiles and footwear; wood and wood products; copper, tin, tungsten, iron; construction materials; pharmaceuticals; fertilizer

Industrial production growth rate: 8.9% (FY94/95 est.)

Labor force
Total: 16.007 million (1992)
By occupation agriculture: 65.2%
By occupation industry: 14.3%
By occupation trade: 10.1%
By occupation government: 6.3%
By occupation other: 4.1% (FY88/89est.)
Labor force

Unemployment rate: NA%

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share

Distribution of family income gini index

Revenues: $5.3 billion
Expenditures: $10 billion, including capital expenditures of $3 billion (1995 est.)

Public debt

Taxes and other revenues


Fiscal year: 1 April - 31 March

Current account balance

Inflation rate consumer prices

Central bank discount rate

Commercial bank prime lending rate

Stock of narrow money

Stock of broad money

Stock of domestic credit

Market value of publicly traded shares

Current account balance

Total value: $1.1 billion (1996 est.)
Commodities: rice, pulses and beans, teak, rubber, hardwood
Partners: Singapore, China, Thailand, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, Japan

Total value: $2 billion (1996 est.)
Commodities: machinery, transport equipment, construction materials, food products, consumer goods
Partners: Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan, China, Malaysia, Thailand

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external: $5.5 billion (FY94/95 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: kyats (K) per US$1 - 6.0600 (1997), 5.9176 (1996), 5.6670 (1995), 5.9749 (1994), 6.1570 (1993), 6.1045 (1992; unofficial - 160-170 (1996)

Myanmar - Energy 1997
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Electricity access

Electricity production: 3.37 billion kWh (1994)

Electricity consumption
Per capita: 73 kWh (1995 est.)

Electricity exports

Electricity imports

Electricity installed generating capacity

Electricity transmission distribution losses

Electricity generation sources


Refined petroleum

Natural gas

Carbon dioxide emissions

Energy consumption per capita

Myanmar - Communication 1997
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular

Telephone system: meets minimum requirements for local and intercity service for business and government; international service is good
Domestic: NA
International: satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Indian Ocean)

Broadcast media

Internet country code

Internet users

Broadband fixed subscriptions

Myanmar - Military 1997
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Military expenditures
Dollar figure: $135 million (FY95/96)
Percent of gdp: NA%

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

Myanmar - Transportation 1997
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

Airports: 73 (1996 est.)
With paved runways total: 54
With paved runways over 3047 m: 2
With paved runways 2438 to 3047 m: 2
With paved runways 15-24 to 2437 m: 13
With paved runways 914 to 1523 m: 9
With paved runways under 914 m: 28 (1996 est.)
With unpaved runways total: 19
With unpaved runways 15-24 to 2437 m: 3
With unpaved runways 914 to 1523 m: 16 (1996 est.)

Airports with paved runways
Total: 54
Over 3047 m: 2
2438 to 3047 m: 2
15-24 to 2437 m: 13
914 to 1523 m: 9
Under 914 m: 28 (1996 est.)

Airports with unpaved runways
Total: 19
15-24 to 2437 m: 3
914 to 1523 m: 16 (1996 est.)


Pipelines: crude oil 1,343 km; natural gas 330 km

Total: 3,569 km
Narrow gauge: 3,569 km 1.000-m gauge (1995)


Waterways: 12,800 km; 3,200 km navigable by large commercial vessels

Merchant marine
Total: 52 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 657,498 GRT/901,418 DWT
Ships by type: bulk 16, cargo 18, chemical tanker 5, container 2, oil tanker 5, passenger-cargo 3, refrigerated cargo 1, vehicle carrier 2 (1996 est.)

Ports and terminals

Myanmar - Transnational issues 1997
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Disputes international: none

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs: world's largest illicit producer of opium (2,560 metric tons in 1996 - a 9% increase over 1995) and a minor producer of cannabis for the international drug trade; surrender of drug warlord KHUN SA's Mong Tai Army in January 1996 was hailed by Rangoon as a major counternarcotics success, but lack of serious government commitment and resources continue to hinder the overall antidrug effort; growing role in the production of methamphetamines for regional consumption


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