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Coastal plains rising to hills and mountains


Tropical; annual southwest (April to October) and northeast (October to February) monsoons


Nationality: Malaysian(s)
Population: 29,628,392 (July 2013 est.), 
Languages: Bahasa Malaysia (official), English, Chinese (Cantonese, Mandarin, Hokkien, Hakka, Hainan, Foochow), Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Panjabi, Thai


Muslim (or Islam—official) 60.4%, Buddhist 19.2%, Christian 9.1%, Hindu 6.3%, Confucianism, Taoism, other traditional Chinese religions 2.6%, other or unknown 1.5%, none 0.8%


Malaysia, a middle-income country, has transformed itself since the 1970s from a producer of raw materials into an emerging multi-sector economy. Under current Prime Minister NAJIB, Malaysia is attempting to achieve high-income status by 2020 and to move farther up the value-added production chain by attracting investments in Islamic finance, high technology industries, biotechnology, and services.

Living Conditions

Slightly more than 50 percent of Malaysia's population lives in urban areas (cities and towns). Both in the urban and rural areas, the kampung (community group) is the center of Malay life. It is a tightly knit community united by ties of family, marriage, or neighborliness, where agreement, compromise, and traditional values reign supreme. The Malays in the cities own many items such as cars, television sets, VCRs, and refrigerators.


Constitutional monarchy

US Military Presence/Support



South China Sea Issues (1:54)



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