Geographic Coordinates: 24 00 N, 90 00 E
Population: 158,065,841 (July 2010 est.)
Main Religion: Islam, Hinduism
Language: Bangla (official, also known as Bengali), English
Government Type: Parliamentary democracy
Chief of State: President Zillur RAHMAN; Head of government: Prime Minister Sheikh HASINA Wajed
Main Industries: cotton textiles, jute, garments, tea processing, paper newsprint, cement, chemical fertilizer, light engineering, sugar
GDP in US Dollars (per capita): $1,600 (2009 est.)
Currency Code: Taka (BDT)
Life Expectancy: 63 years (men), 65 years (women) (UN)
Environment - current issues: Many people are landless and forced to live on and cultivate flood-prone land; Waterborne diseases prevalent in surface water; water pollution, especially of fishing areas, results from the use of commercial pesticides; ground water contaminated by naturally occurring arsenic; Intermittent water shortages because of falling water tables in the northern and central parts of the country; Soil degradation and erosion; Deforestation; Severe overpopulation
Issues facing Women and Children:
- Maternal mortality remains high. Most rural women give birth at home, without medical assistance.
- Millions of children are malnourished. Roughly half of all children under age five are underweight.
- Primary school enrolment is relatively high, but many children – especially those in urban slums – are still denied their right to a basic education. Seven percent of Bangladeshi children under age fourteen are in the labour force.
Land Mine Ban Treaty: Y
Local Media: Press: The Daily Star, The Bangladesh Observer, New Age, The New Nation, Daily Prothom Alo; Radio and TV: Radio Bangladesh, Bangladesh TV (BTV)
Interesting Fact: Cyclones are a natural hazard in Bangladesh. Bangladesh also suffers regularly from substantial flooding caused by monsoon rains and melting snows from the Himalayas. George Harrison organized a concert to raise money for the victims of Bangladesh floods. He also recorded a single called Bangladesh which reached the top twenty in the UK pop charts (1971).
Famous for: mal-mal (textile), jute, Mahasthangarh (oldest known city site), buffalo carts and tomtoms (horse carts), jatra (folk drama)
Official Tourism Website: http://www.bangladesh.gov.bd/
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