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MYANMAR INFORMATION
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Own Golden Glory

Whenever the country of Myanmar is mentioned, many will recognize it as the land of ancient palaces and city walls, and where one can see many pagodas each shining in their own golden glory. It is the land where the natural beauty and the rich cultural heritage are maintained on one hand, and the tremendous efforts for modernization on the other, can clearly be seen. These two magnificent scenarios are the main attraction of Myanmar.

The Size of France and U K Combined

Mother nature has blessed Myanma with the largest area among the nations of the southeast Asian peninsula. With an area of about 680,000 square kilometers it is about the size of France and the United Kingdom combined. With a population of over 46 million, and sharing common borders with China in the north and northeast, with Laos in the east, with Thailand in the southeast, and with India and Bangladesh in the west, Myanmar can be easily located on the world map. West of Myanmar .is the Indian Ocean. Myanmar's coastline starts at the Myanmar-Bangladesh border and runs south rightdown to the border with Thailand. This long coastline measures over 2,000 kilometers.

Dense Forests

Half the acre of Myanmar is covered by dense forests with springs, waterfalls, rivers and streams where wildlife is in abundance. This rich natural beauty is so well maintained that one can rightfully say that Myanmar is the land of rare natural wonders and sights.

Together with the snow-capped peaks of the high mountain ranges in the north, the economically significant, and one of the longest of the rivers, the Ayeyarwaddy, originates and flows down south to serve as the main waterway for Myanmar. In the central part of the country where the Ayeyarwaddy flows lines the ancient capital of Bagan. Bagan still exists today as one of the most prominent archaeological regions of the south east Asia. At present, constant care and attention is given to maintain the ancient pagodas and edifices of Bagan to provide this it or with this breath-taking scenery.

Culture and Traditions

Myanmar's existence dates back to many centuries where under the rule of Myanmar kings and its own culture and traditions, civilization flourished. As part of the restoration of the rich cultural heritage of Myanmar, palaces and related edifices of Myanmar kings have been carefully excavated and renovated or reconstructed to their original designs. These magnificent structures clearly depict the once rich and affluent civilization of the Myanmar people.

Moreover, in the Pon-Taung-Pon-Nyar region of central Myanmar, recent discoveries of some primate fossils dating back to some 40 million years may qualify Myanmar as the region where mankind originated. The findings, as recent as 13 April 1997, however, clearly indicate the existence of Myanmar culture and traditions since time immemorial.

Roads in the Country

In striving for the economic development of the country, the State has given priority to one of the major factors, the transport communication. Motor roads and highways, railroads, and airports are being expanded, and large bridges arc also being constructed as necessary. In the near future, over 20 bridges and river crossings linking various region of Myanmar will become operational of the recently opened (5) large bridges in 1997, the Nawaday bridge has linked Bago division with the Rakhine State while another interregional linkage of Bago division, Mon and Kayin State is the Thanlwin bridge.

In addition, over-2700 miles of motor roads in the country, inclusive of the remote areas have been completed. Myanmar in the past had some near 2000 miles of railroad, and now, 800 miles have been newly added, 200 miles are being constructed, and 650miles are being planned.

The Telecommunications

The telecommunications sector has achieved some noteworthy developments. The telephone exchange systems in 1997 has reached to over 500 with a capacity to communicate to 320 townships, out of 324 townships of the country. Moreover, the most modern cellular phone system in south-east Asia, the Code Division Multiple Access Wireless Local Loop System, or the CDMA system is now successfully established.

Recent installation of a 960-microchannel digital microwave link at the Thanlyin Satellite Communication Station, phase A has resulted in the availability of over 800 IDD channels for smooth communication with the outside world. In the near future, use of the Asia-Europe submarine cable will facilitate direct links with 32 countries by over 10,000 channels.

TV broadcasts

In the Information sector, TV Myanmar transmissions now reach the entire country including the remote areas with the use of the ASIA SAT (1) satellite. In addition, a total of 120 TV relay stations have been built throughout the country which has resulted in 82 per cent television coverage or TV broadcasts can be received in 267 out of 324 townships of Myanmar.

Since 27 March 1997, an additional TV station, the Myawaddy TV has commenced TV broadcasts. Although coverage is now limited to only (3) large townships, efforts are being made to expand the coverage to more large townships in future.

Seaport

In addition, to facilitate large oceanic vessels and to enhance loading and unloading facilities in the Yangon river, an international seaport is being constructed at Thilawar with a capacity of handling 500,000 standard sized cargo containers a year.

Education

With the growing economic situation, the Education sector has been expanded and as of 1997, over 4000 primary schools, about 400 middle schools and over 200 high schools have been added. Besides upgrading the colleges throughout the country to University level, more colleges are now being opened. At present under the Higher education system, there are now (11) Universities, (2) Senior General Than Shwe Institutes, (18) Colleges, (4) Engineering Institutes, (2) Computer Universities, (4) Cooperatives Colleges (1) Culture Institute, (4) Medical Institutes, and (6) Institutes of Medical Technology.

Health

In the Health sector, new hospitals have been opened, and they are the Eye, Ear, Nose and Throat Specialist Hospital in Yangon, the Tuberculosis Hospital in Mandalay, and the General Hospital in Pyay. Medical supplies and services have also been extended to the public. According to the Goal of "Health for All by the Year 2000". Collaboration with International Organizations have resulted in achieving over 95 per cent coverage for polio immunization among over 6 million children of the country through special National Immunization Days.

Housing

Housing has also been expanded to cope with the growing population. For Yangon to become a modern capital, and to raise the standard of living, housing estates with pucca buildings and condominiums, together with new satellite towns are being built extensively.

Heritage

In order to maintain its rich culture heritage, a competition on performing arts is held every year on a nationwide scale, and in 1997 the competition was held for the fifth time. This competition not only maintains the national traditions and cultures but is also able to identify and nurture new breed of artists for the country.

Natural Beauty

In reality, Myanmar is full natural beauty, and efforts to conserve and maintain the natural environment and continuously being made. The once dry and arid central zone of the country, in the vicinity of Mount Poppa area is now become a scene of greenery.

Cultural Traditions

Myanmar's rich cultural traditions and practices have existed since time immemorial. The exquisite masterpieces of Myanmar craftsmen and the amazing number of pagoda which are scattered all over the country are more than enough to tempt a visitor to stay in Myanmar. In fact these are the priceless national treasure which uphold the age-old, rich traditions and cultures of Myanmar.

Climate and Seasons

Myanmar has the effects of monsoon in different parts of country. Temperature varies from 38C to l9C; humidity from 82.8% to 66%. Myanmar has three distinctive seasons namely, hot (March to May), rainy (June to October) and cool (November to February)

Time

Myanmar Time is 6:30 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time.

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