Sri Lanka at a Glance

  • Official name: Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka
  • Government type: Republic
  • Location: Latitude 5° 55. to 9° 50. north, longitude 79° 42. to 81° 52., 650km north of the equator
  • Dimensions: 430km north to south, 225km east to west
  • Coastline: 1,340km
  • Area: 65,525km
  • Currency (code): Sri Lankan Rupee (LKR)
  • Independence: 4 February 1948
  • Administrative capital:Colombo
  • Administrative divisions:9 provinces; Central, North Central, North Eastern, North Western, Sabaragamuwa, Southern, Uva, Western, Eastern Province.
  • Climate:Typically tropical, with a northeast monsoon (December to March) bringing unsettled weather to the north and east, and a southwest monsoon (June to October) bringing bad weather to the south and west
  • Terrain:Mostly low, flat to rolling plain; mountains in south-central interior
  • Highest mountain:Pidurutalagala, 2,524m
  • Highest waterfall: Bambarakanda, 263m
  • National FlowerThe Blue Water Lily (Nymphaea stellata).
  • National parks and nature reserves area:8,
  • Population:21,128,773 (? Census)
  • Population growth rate: 1.3%
  • Population Density:309 people per sq km
  • Life Expectancy at Birth74 years for female, 64 years for male
  • Literacy rate :Female 87.9% Male 92.5%
  • Ethnic groups:Sinhalese 73.8%, Sri Lankan Moors 7.2%, Indian Tamil 4.6%, Sri Lankan Tamil 3.9%, other 0.5%, unspecified 10% (2001 census)
  • Languages:Sinhala (official and national language) 74%, Tamil (national language) 18%, other 8% Note: English (a link language commonly) is used in government and spoken competently by about 10% of the population
  • Religion:Buddhist 69.1%, Muslim 7.6%, Hindu 7.1%, Christian 6.2%, unspecified 10% (2001 census)
  • Time zone:Sri Lanka Standard Time is five and a half hours ahead of GMT. (Allowance should be made for summer-time changes in Europe.)
  • International dialing: +94
  • Electricity:230 ~ 240 volts, 50 cycles AC. If you travel with a laptop computer bring a stabilizer
  • Economy:Sri Lanka’s most dynamic sectors are food processing, textiles and apparel, food and beverages, port construction, telecommunications, and insurance and banking. In 2006, plantation crops made up only 15% of exports (90% in 1970), while textiles and garments accounted for more than 60%. About 800,000 Sri Lankans work abroad, 90% of them in the Middle East. They send home more than US$1 billion a year.
  • Labour force34.3% of the labour population is employed in agriculture, 25.3% in industry and 40.4% in services (30 June 2006 est.) The unemployment rate is 5.7% (2007 est.)
  • Agriculture & productsRice, sugarcane, grains, pulses, oilseed, spices, tea, rubber, coconutsm milk, eggs, hides, beef, fish
  • Industries:Processing of rubber, tea, coconuts, tobacco and other agricultural commodities; telecommunications, insurance, banking; clothing, textiles; cement, petroleum refining.
  • Exports:Textiles and apparel; tea and spices; diamonds, emeralds, rubies; coconut products, rubber manufactures, fish
  • Imports:Main import commodities are textile fabrics, mineral products, petroleum, foodstuffs, machinery and transportation equipment: $10.61 billion f.o.b. (2007 est.). Percentage of main commodities from main import partners: India 19.6%, China 10.5%, Singapore 8.8%, Iran 5.7%, Malaysia 5.1%, Hong Kong 4.2%, Japan 4.1% (2006)
  • Gross Domestic Product (GDP):Purchasing power parity: $81.29 billion (2007 est.). Official exchange rate: $30.01 billion (2007 est.) Real growth rate: 6.3% (2007 est.) Per capita: $4,100 (2007 est.) composition by sector: Agriculture: 16.5% Industry: 26.9%
  • Gross National Product (GNP):Sri Lanka is placed in 76th place in GNP figures of the world.s nations with $22.8 billion (2005)
  • Flag description: yellow with two panels; the smaller hoist-side panel has two equal vertical bands of green (hoist side) and orange; the other panel is a large dark red rectangle with a yellow lion holding a sword, and there is a yellow bo leaf in each corner; the yellow field appears as a border around the entire flag and extends between the two panels
Sri Lanka Map
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