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Vietnam Geography Profile 2017

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LocationSoutheastern Asia, bordering the Gulf of Thailand, Gulf of Tonkin, and South China Sea, as well as China, Laos, and Cambodia
Geographic coordinates16 10 N, 107 50 E
Map referencesSoutheast Asia
Areatotal: 331,210 sq km
land: 310,070 sq km
water: 21,140 sq km
Area - comparativeabout three times the size of Tennesee; slightly larger than New Mexico
Land boundariestotal: 4,616 km
border countries (3): Cambodia 1,158 km, China 1,297 km, Laos 2,161 km
Coastline3,444 km (excludes islands)
Maritime claimsterritorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin
Climatetropical in south; monsoonal in north with hot, rainy season (May to September) and warm, dry season (October to March)
Terrainlow, flat delta in south and north; central highlands; hilly, mountainous in far north and northwest
Elevation extremesmean elevation: 398 m
elevation extremes: lowest point: South China Sea 0 m
highest point: Fan Si Pan 3,144 m
Natural resourcesphosphates, coal, manganese, rare earth elements, bauxite, chromate, offshore oil and gas deposits, timber, hydropower, arable land
Land useagricultural land: 34.8%
arable land 20.6%; permanent crops 12.1%; permanent pasture 2.1%
forest: 45%
other: 20.2% (2011 est.)
Irrigated land46,000 sq km (2012)
Population distributionthough it has one of the highest population densities in the world, the population is not evenly dispersed; clustering appears heaviest along the South China Sea and Gulf of Tonkin, with the Mekong Delta (in the south) and the Red River Valley (in the north) having the largest concentrations of people
Natural hazardsoccasional typhoons (May to January) with extensive flooding, especially in the Mekong River delta
Environment - current issueslogging and slash-and-burn agricultural practices contribute to deforestation and soil degradation; water pollution and overfishing threaten marine life populations; groundwater contamination limits potable water supply; growing urban industrialization and population migration are rapidly degrading environment in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City
Environment - international agreementsparty to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - noteextending 1,650 km north to south, the country is only 50 km across at its narrowest point

Source: CIA World Factbook
This page was last updated on July 9, 2017

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