Bangladesh is a low-lying country with a total area of 147,570 Kilometre. It stretches attitudinally between 200 34' and 260 38' north and longitudinally between 880 01' and 920 41' east. It is mostly surrounded by Indian Territory except for a small strip in the south east of Myanmar. Bay of Bengal lies on the south. Most of the area is relatively flat lying in the deltaic plain of the Ganges- Brahmaputra- Meghan river system. The only significant uplands are in the northeast and southeast of the country with average elevation of 244 m and 610 m respectively. The country is covered with a network of rivers and canals forming a maze of interconnecting channels.
Bangladesh has a tropical monsoon climate marked by sweltering temperatures and high humidity. The country has four seasons, the winter (Dec-Feb), summer (Mar-May), monsoon (Jun-Sept), and autumn (Oct-Nov). During summer and monsoon tropical cyclones, storms and tidal bores are not uncommon. The population of Bangladesh is about 165 Million. Majority of the population are Muslims. Hindus, Buddhists and Christians make up 13 present of the entire population. Over 98 percent of the people speak Bengali. English however, is widely used.
The lowest administrative unit is the union run by an elected council. Each union comprises a number of villages and about 8-10 unions cluster into a upazila. Government services are concentrated at the upazila level. There are about 488 upazila in Bangladesh. A Several upazila form a district. The total number of districts stands at 64. The entire country is broadly divided into seven administrative divisions, namely, Dhaka, Chittagong, Khulna, Rajshahi, Rangpur, Barishal and Sylhet.
BANGLADESH: BASIC FACTS
Government Official Name : The People’s Republic of Bangladesh, Capital : Dhaka, Independence Day : March 26, 1971, Victory Day : December 16, 1971 Government System : Parliamentary Democracy, Head of the government : Prime Minister, Parliamentary seats : 350, President : Abdul Hamid, Prime Minister : Sheikh Hasina, Administrative Units : Division: 7, District: 64, Upazila: 488 (Upto 2013), Municipal Corporation: 67 (Upto 2013), City Corporation: 11 (Upto 2013), Unions: 4550 (Upto 2013), National Sign : Shapla, Major Cities : Dhaka, Chittagong, Khulna, Rajshahi, Sylhet, Barisal, Mymensingh, Comilla. GEOGRAPHY AND CLIMATE Geographical location: Between 20˚34' and 26˚38' North Latitude and Between 88˚01' and 92˚41' East Longitude, Boundaries : North: India (West Bengal and Meghalaya). West: India (West Bengal), East: India (Tripura and Assam) and Myanmar, South: Bay of Bengal, Area: 1,47,570 sq.km. Or 56,977 sq. mls. (Territorial water -12 nautical miles), INTERNATIONAL BOUNDARIES:North: India (West Bengal and Meghalaya), West: India (West Bengal), East: India (Tripura and Assam) and Myanmar, South: Bay of Bengal. Standard Time: GMT+ 6.00 Hours. Climate: Sub-tropical monsoon. Climate Variations& Temperature : Winter (December- February), Average Maximum 29˚C, Average Minimum 11˚C, Summer (March-June), Average Maximum 32˚C, Average Minimum 21˚C, Rainfall : 1,194 mm. to 3454 mm.during monsoon, Humidity : Highest 99% (July), Lowest 36 %( December & January), Principle Rivers: Padma, Meghna, Jamuna, Brahmaputra, Teesta, Surma, and Karnaphuli etc. totalling to 230 rivers including their tributaries.
Population: 165 Million, Density of population: 1203 persons /square km. Population Growth Rate: 1.2% annual change (2013). Life expectancy: 70.65 Years (2014 EST.). Adult Literacy Rate: 55%. UN HDI Ranking: 142; Medium Human Development (2014 EST.). Women participation in the parliament: 18.9 %. Languages: Mother tongue- Bangla (98%) and tribal dialects.
MAJOR CROPS AND NATURAL RESOURCES
Principle Crops: Rice, Jute, Wheat, Tea, Tobacco, Sugarcane. Principle Minerals: Natural Gas, Lignite, Coal, Limestone, hard rock, Silica, Sand, White Clay, radio-active sand.
THE ECONOMY AND COMMERCE CURRENCY
Bangladesh Taka. GDP: 129.86 Billion US $. GDP Per Capita:957.8 US $ (2013). GDP real growth rate: 6.71%. Major Export Markets: US, EU and Japan. Major Industries : Readymade Garment, Jute, Tea, Textiles, Paper, Newsprint, Fertilizer, Leather and Leather Goods, Sugar, Cement, Fish Processing, Pharmaceuticals, Chemical industries. Traditional Export Items: Raw-jute, jute manufacturers and jute products, Tea, Leather & Leather products. Non-traditional Export Items: Ready-made Garment, Frozen shrimps, other fish products, newsprint, paper, Naphtha, Furnace oil, Urea, Ceramic products. Major imports: Wheat, Oil Seeds, Crude petroleum, raw cotton, Edible oil, Petroleum products, Fertilizer, Staple fibbers, Yarn, Iron, and Steel. Major Trade Partners : USA, EU countries, India, China, Japan, South Korea, Australia, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Indonesia, Thailand, Saudi Arabia, UAE . AIR, SEA AND RIVER PORTS International Airports: Hazrat Shah Jalal International Airport Dhaka, Shah Amanatsha International Airport Chittagong and Osmani Inernational Airport Sylhet. Domestics Airports: Dhaka, Chittagong, Jessore, Rajshahi, Iswardi, Sylhet, Barisal,Cox’s Bazaar and Syedpur. Seaports: Chittagong and Mongla.
COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE
International dealing code: +880. Radio Broadcast Station: Dhaka, Chittagong, Rajshahi, Khulna, Sylhet, Camilla, Rangamati and Thakurgaon. TV Broadcasting Station: Dhaka, Natore, Chittagong, Brahmanbaria, Patuakhali, Noakhali. Satellite Stations: Betbunia, (Chittagong) and Talibabad (Gazipur), Mohakhali(Dhaka), Sylhet for international telecommunication Wearing Apparels: Tropical in summer and light woollen in winter. Major festivals : New Year Eave, Eid-ul-Fitar & Eid – ul-Azha, Independence Day, Victory Day, Durga Puja etc. Games&Sports: Ha-du-du, football, Cricket etc. Food choice: Rice, ruti,fish, meat, vegetables etc. Tourist Season: October to March. Main Tourist Attractions : Colourful tribal life of Hill Tracts, world’s longest sea beach at Cox’s bazaar, centuries old historical sites at Dhaka, Paharpur, mainamati, Mohastangar, Sundarban the home of the Royal Bengal Tiger, largest tea garden, riverine life, etc.