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Country Profile

Flag

Picture of Nepalese Flag

Geography
Location

Southern Asia, between China and India. Nepal is landlocked and has a total area of 140,800 sq km. Nepal contains eight of world's 10 highest peaks, including Mount Everest - the world's tallest - on the border with China.

Climate

Nepal has a varied climate. It has a similar latitude to Florida and varies from cool summers and severe winters in north to subtropical summers and mild winters in south. The monsoon cycle and changes in altitude throughout the country affect the temperature as well as precipitation.

Map of Nepal
Government Type

Parliamentary democracy and constitutional monarchy

Capital

Kathmandu

People
Population

27,676,547 (July 2005 est.)

Life Expectancy at Birth

total population: 59.8 years
male: 60.09 years
female: 59.5 years (2005 est.)

Ethnic Groups

Chhettri 15.5%, Brahman-Hill 12.5%, Magar 7%, Tharu 6.6%, Tamang 5.5%, Newar 5.4%, Muslim 4.2%, Kami 3.9%, Yadav 3.9%, other 32.7%, unspecified 2.8% (2001 census)

Religions

Hindu 80.6%, Buddhist 10.7%, Muslim 4.2%, Kirant 3.6%, other 0.9% (2001 census) note: only official Hindu state in the world

Languages

Nepali 47.8%, Maithali 12.1%, Bhojpuri 7.4%, Tharu (Dagaura/Rana) 5.8%, Tamang 5.1%, Newar 3.6%, Magar 3.3%, Awadhi 2.4%, other 10%, unspecified 2.5% (2001 census) note: many in government and business also speak English

Currency

Nepalese rupee (NPR)

Communications

Nepal has poor telephone and telegraph service, fair radiotelephone communication service, and a fair mobile cellular telephone network. Nepal has radio, television and internet access.

Transportation

Nepal has 59 km of railways, 13,223 km of highways (4,073 km are paved), and 46 airports (9 of which have paved runways).