Home

Bangladesh vs. Burma

Introduction

BangladeshBurma
BackgroundThe huge delta region formed at the confluence of the Ganges and Brahmaputra River systems - now referred to as Bangladesh - was a loosely incorporated outpost of various empires centered on the Gangetic plain for much of the first millennium A.D. Muslim conversions and settlement in the region began in the 10th century, primarily from Arab and Persian traders and preachers. Europeans established trading posts in the area in the 16th century. Eventually the area known as Bengal, primarily Hindu in the western section and mostly Muslim in the eastern half, became part of British India. Partition in 1947 resulted in an eastern wing of Pakistan in the Muslim-majority area, which became East Pakistan. Calls for greater autonomy and animosity between the eastern and western wings of Pakistan led to a Bengali independence movement. That movement, led by the Awami League (AL) and supported by India, won the independence war for Bangladesh in 1971.
The post-independence AL government faced daunting challenges and in 1975 was overthrown by the military, triggering a series of military coups that resulted in a military-backed government and subsequent creation of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) in 1978. That government also ended in a coup in 1981, followed by military-backed rule until democratic elections occurred in 1991. The BNP and AL alternated in power between 1991 and 2013, with the exception of a military-backed, emergency caretaker regime that suspended parliamentary elections planned for January 2007 in an effort to reform the political system and root out corruption. That government returned the country to fully democratic rule in December 2008 with the election of the AL and Prime Minister Sheikh HASINA. In January 2014, the incumbent AL won the national election by an overwhelming majority after the BNP boycotted, extending HASINA's term as prime minister. With the help of international development assistance, Bangladesh has reduced the poverty rate from over half of the population to less than a third, achieved Millennium Development Goals for maternal and child health, and made great progress in food security since independence. The economy has grown at an annual average of about 6% over the last two decades and the country reached World Bank lower-middle income status in 2015.
Various ethnic Burmese and ethnic minority city-states or kingdoms occupied the present borders through the 19th century. Over a period of 62 years (1824-1886), Britain conquered Burma and incorporated the country into its Indian Empire. Burma was administered as a province of India until 1937 when it became a separate, self-governing colony; in 1948, Burma attained independence from the British Commonwealth. Gen. NE WIN dominated the government from 1962 to 1988, first as military ruler, then as self-appointed president, and later as political kingpin. In response to widespread civil unrest, NE WIN resigned in 1988, but within months the military crushed student-led protests and took power.
Multiparty legislative elections in 1990 resulted in the main opposition party - the National League for Democracy (NLD) - winning a landslide victory. Instead of handing over power, the junta placed NLD leader (and 1991 Nobel Peace Prize recipient) AUNG SAN SUU KYI under house arrest from 1989 to 1995, 2000 to 2002, and from May 2003 to November 2010. In late September 2007, the ruling junta brutally suppressed protests over increased fuel prices led by prodemocracy activists and Buddhist monks, killing an unknown number of people and arresting thousands for participating in the demonstrations. In early May 2008, Burma was struck by Cyclone Nargis, which left over 138,000 dead and tens of thousands injured and homeless. Despite this tragedy, the junta proceeded with its May constitutional referendum, the first vote in Burma since 1990. Legislative elections held in November 2010, which the NLD boycotted and were considered flawed by many in the international community, saw the ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party garner over 75% of the contested seats.
The national legislature convened in January 2011 and selected former Prime Minister THEIN SEIN as president. Although the vast majority of national-level appointees named by THEIN SEIN were former or current military officers, the government initiated a series of political and economic reforms leading to a substantial opening of the long-isolated country. These reforms included releasing hundreds of political prisoners, signing a nationwide cease-fire with several of the country's ethnic armed groups, pursuing legal reform, and gradually reducing restrictions on freedom of the press, association, and civil society. At least due in part to these reforms, AUNG SAN SUU KYI was elected to the national legislature in April 2012 and became chair of the Committee for Rule of Law and Tranquility. Burma served as chair of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) for 2014. In a flawed but largely credible national legislative election in November 2015 featuring more than 90 political parties, the NLD again won a landslide victory. Using its overwhelming majority in both houses of parliament, the NLD elected HTIN KYAW, AUNG SAN SUU KYI’s confidant and long-time NLD supporter, as president. Burma's first credibly elected civilian government after more than five decades of military dictatorship was sworn into office on 30 March 2016.

Geography

BangladeshBurma
LocationSouthern Asia, bordering the Bay of Bengal, between Burma and India
Southeastern Asia, bordering the Andaman Sea and the Bay of Bengal, between Bangladesh and Thailand
Geographic coordinates24 00 N, 90 00 E
22 00 N, 98 00 E
Map referencesAsia
Southeast Asia
Areatotal: 148,460 sq km
land: 130,170 sq km
water: 18,290 sq km
total: 676,578 sq km
land: 653,508 sq km
water: 23,070 sq km
Area - comparativeslightly larger than Pennsylvania and New Jersey combined; slightly smaller than Iowa
slightly smaller than Texas
Land boundariestotal: 4,413 km
border countries (2): Burma 271 km, India 4,142 km
total: 6,522 km
border countries (5): Bangladesh 271 km, China 2,129 km, India 1,468 km, Laos 238 km, Thailand 2,416 km
Coastline580 km
1,930 km
Maritime claimsterritorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 18 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: to the outer limits of the continental margin
territorial 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; mild winter (October to March); hot, humid summer (March to June); humid, warm rainy monsoon (June to October)
tropical monsoon; cloudy, rainy, hot, humid summers (southwest monsoon, June to September); less cloudy, scant rainfall, mild temperatures, lower humidity during winter (northeast monsoon, December to April)
Terrainmostly flat alluvial plain; hilly in southeast
central lowlands ringed by steep, rugged highlands
Elevation extremesmean elevation: 85 m
elevation extremes: lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m
highest point: Keokradong 1,230 m
mean elevation: 702 m
elevation extremes: lowest point: Andaman Sea/Bay of Bengal 0 m
highest point: Gamlang Razi 5,870 m
Natural resourcesnatural gas, arable land, timber, coal
petroleum, timber, tin, antimony, zinc, copper, tungsten, lead, coal, marble, limestone, precious stones, natural gas, hydropower, arable land
Land useagricultural land: 70.1%
arable land 59%; permanent crops 6.5%; permanent pasture 4.6%
forest: 11.1%
other: 18.8% (2011 est.)
agricultural land: 19.2%
arable land 16.5%; permanent crops 2.2%; permanent pasture 0.5%
forest: 48.2%
other: 32.6% (2011 est.)
Irrigated land53,000 sq km (2012)
22,950 sq km (2012)
Natural hazardsdroughts; cyclones; much of the country routinely inundated during the summer monsoon season
destructive earthquakes and cyclones; flooding and landslides common during rainy season (June to September); periodic droughts
Environment - current issuesmany people are landless and forced to live on and cultivate flood-prone land; waterborne diseases prevalent in surface water; water pollution, especially of fishing areas, results from the use of commercial pesticides; ground water contaminated by naturally occurring arsenic; intermittent water shortages because of falling water tables in the northern and central parts of the country; soil degradation and erosion; deforestation; severe overpopulation
deforestation; industrial pollution of air, soil, and water; inadequate sanitation and water treatment contribute to disease
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
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - notemost of the country is situated on deltas of large rivers flowing from the Himalayas: the Ganges unites with the Jamuna (main channel of the Brahmaputra) and later joins the Meghna to eventually empty into the Bay of Bengal
strategic location near major Indian Ocean shipping lanes; the north-south flowing Irrawaddy River is the country's largest and most important commercial waterway

Demographics

BangladeshBurma
Population157,826,578 (July 2017 est.)
55,123,814
note: estimates for this country take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2017 est.)
Age structure0-14 years: 27.76% (male 22,283,780/female 21,521,977)
15-24 years: 19.36% (male 15,309,543/female 15,241,971)
25-54 years: 39.73% (male 30,094,014/female 32,614,286)
55-64 years: 6.93% (male 5,405,900/female 5,527,330)
65 years and over: 6.23% (male 4,666,033/female 5,161,744) (2017 est.)
0-14 years: 26.85% (male 7,567,976/female 7,233,577)
15-24 years: 17.75% (male 4,917,290/female 4,865,264)
25-54 years: 42.36% (male 11,426,913/female 11,922,728)
55-64 years: 7.52% (male 1,930,253/female 2,213,263)
65 years and over: 5.53% (male 1,327,811/female 1,718,739) (2017 est.)
Median agetotal: 26.7 years
male: 26 years
female: 27.3 years (2017 est.)
total: 28.2 years
male: 27.4 years
female: 29 years (2017 est.)
Population growth rate1.04% (2017 est.)
0.91% (2017 est.)
Birth rate18.8 births/1,000 population (2017 est.)
18.1 births/1,000 population (2017 est.)
Death rate5.4 deaths/1,000 population (2017 est.)
7.4 deaths/1,000 population (2017 est.)
Net migration rate-3.1 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2017 est.)
-1.5 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2017 est.)
Sex ratioat birth: 1.04 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 0.93 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.98 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.97 male(s)/female
total population: 0.97 male(s)/female (2016 est.)
at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.03 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 0.99 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.89 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.77 male(s)/female
total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2016 est.)
Infant mortality ratetotal: 31.7 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 34 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 29.2 deaths/1,000 live births (2017 est.)
total: 35.8 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 38.8 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 32.6 deaths/1,000 live births (2017 est.)
Life expectancy at birthtotal population: 73.4 years
male: 71.3 years
female: 75.6 years (2017 est.)
total population: 68.2 years
male: 66.6 years
female: 69.9 years (2017 est.)
Total fertility rate2.17 children born/woman (2017 est.)
2.17 children born/woman (2017 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate<.01% (2016 est.)
0.8% (2016 est.)
Nationalitynoun: Bangladeshi(s)
adjective: Bangladeshi
noun: Burmese (singular and plural)
adjective: Burmese
Ethnic groupsBengali at least 98%, ethnic groups 1.1%
note: Bangladesh's government recognizes 27 ethnic groups under the 2010 Cultural Institution for Small Anthropological Groups Act; other sources estimate there are about 75 ethnic groups; critics of the 2011 census claim that it underestimates the size of Bangladesh's ethnic population (2011 est.)
Burman (Bamar) 68%, Shan 9%, Karen 7%, Rakhine 4%, Chinese 3%, Indian 2%, Mon 2%, other 5%
note: government recognizes 135 indigenous ethnic groups
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS12,000 (2016 est.)
230,000 (2016 est.)
ReligionsMuslim 89.1%, Hindu 10%, other 0.9% (includes Buddhist, Christian) (2013 est.)
Buddhist 87.9%, Christian 6.2%, Muslim 4.3%, Animist 0.8%, Hindu 0.5%, other 0.2%, none 0.1%
note: religion estimate is based on the 2014 national census, including an estimate for the non-enumerated population of Rakhine State, which is assumed to mainly affiliate with the Islamic faith (2014 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths1,000 (2016 est.)
7,800 (2016 est.)
LanguagesBangla 98.8% (official, also known as Bengali), other 1.2% (2011 est.)
Burmese (official)
note: minority ethnic groups have their own languages
Literacydefinition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 72.8%
male: 75.6%
female: 69.9% (2016 est.)
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 75.6%
male: 80%
female: 71.8% (2016 est.)
Major infectious diseasesdegree of risk: high
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A and E, and typhoid fever
vectorborne diseases: dengue fever and malaria are high risks in some locations
water contact disease: leptospirosis
animal contact disease: rabies (2016)
degree of risk: very high
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever
vectorborne diseases: dengue fever, malaria, and Japanese encephalitis
water contact disease: leptospirosis
animal contact disease: rabies (2016)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)total: 10 years
male: 10 years
female: 10 years (2011)
total: 8 years
male: NA
female: NA (2007)
Urbanizationurban population: 35.8% of total population (2017)
rate of urbanization: 3.19% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
urban population: 35.2% of total population (2017)
rate of urbanization: 2.29% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
Drinking water sourceimproved:
urban: 86.5% of population
rural: 87% of population
total: 86.9% of population
unimproved:
urban: 13.5% of population
rural: 13% of population
total: 13.1% of population (2015 est.)
improved:
urban: 92.7% of population
rural: 74.4% of population
total: 80.6% of population
unimproved:
urban: 7.3% of population
rural: 25.6% of population
total: 19.4% of population (2015 est.)
Sanitation facility accessimproved:
urban: 57.7% of population
rural: 62.1% of population
total: 60.6% of population
unimproved:
urban: 42.3% of population
rural: 37.9% of population
total: 39.4% of population (2015 est.)
improved:
urban: 84.3% of population
rural: 73.9% of population
total: 77.4% of population
unimproved:
urban: 15.7% of population
rural: 26.1% of population
total: 22.6% of population (2012 est.)
Major cities - populationDHAKA (capital) 17.598 million; Chittagong 4.539 million; Khulna 1.022 million; Rajshahi 844,000 (2015)
RANGOON (Yangon) (capital) 4.802 million; Mandalay 1.167 million; Nay Pyi Taw 1.03 million (2015)
Maternal mortality rate176 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
178 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight32.6% (2014)
18.9% (2016)
Health expenditures2.8% of GDP (2014)
2.3% of GDP (2014)
Physicians density0.39 physicians/1,000 population (2012)
0.57 physicians/1,000 population (2012)
Hospital bed density0.6 beds/1,000 population (2011)
0.6 beds/1,000 population (2006)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate3.6% (2016)
5.8% (2016)
Mother's mean age at first birth18.5 years
note: median age at first birth among women 25-29 (2014 est.)
25 years
note: median age at first birth among women 25-29 (2015/16 est.)
Contraceptive prevalence rate62.3% (2014)
52.2% (2015/16)
Dependency ratiostotal dependency ratio: 52.6
youth dependency ratio: 44.9
elderly dependency ratio: 7.7
potential support ratio: 13 (2015 est.)
total dependency ratio: 49.7
youth dependency ratio: 41.7
elderly dependency ratio: 8
potential support ratio: 12.6 (2015 est.)

Government

BangladeshBurma
Country name"conventional long form: People's Republic of Bangladesh
conventional short form: Bangladesh
local long form: Gana Prajatantri Bangladesh
local short form: Bangladesh
former: East Bengal, East Pakistan
etymology: the name - a compound of the Bengali words ""Bangla"" (Bengal) and ""desh"" (country) - means ""Country of Bengal""
"
"conventional long form: Union of Burma
conventional short form: Burma
local long form: Pyidaungzu Thammada Myanma Naingngandaw (translated as the Republic of the Union of Myanmar)
local short form: Myanma Naingngandaw
former: Socialist Republic of the Union of Burma, Union of Myanmar
note: since 1989 the military authorities in Burma and the current parliamentary government have promoted the name Myanmar as a conventional name for their state; the US Government has not adopted the name
etymology: both ""Burma"" and ""Myanmar"" derive from the name of the majority Burmese Bamar ethnic group
"
Government typeparliamentary republic
parliamentary republic
Capitalname: Dhaka
geographic coordinates: 23 43 N, 90 24 E
time difference: UTC+6 (11 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
name: Rangoon (Yangon); note - Nay Pyi Taw is the administrative capital
geographic coordinates: 16 48 N, 96 09 E
time difference: UTC+6.5 (11.5 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions8 divisions; Barisal, Chittagong, Dhaka, Khulna, Mymensingh, Rajshahi, Rangpur, Sylhet
7 regions (taing-myar, singular - taing), 7 states (pyi ne-myar, singular - pyi ne), 1 union territory
regions: Ayeyawady (Irrawaddy), Bago, Magway, Mandalay, Sagaing, Taninthayi, Yangon (Rangoon)
states: Chin, Kachin, Kayah, Kayin, Mon, Rakhine, Shan
union territory: Nay Pyi Taw
Independence16 December 1971 (from West Pakistan)
4 January 1948 (from the UK)
National holidayIndependence Day, 26 March (1971); Victory Day, 16 December (1971); note - 26 March 1971 is the date of the Awami League's declaration of an independent Bangladesh, and 16 December (Victory Day) memorializes the military victory over Pakistan and the official creation of the state of Bangladesh
Independence Day, 4 January (1948); Union Day, 12 February (1947)
Constitutionhistory: previous 1935, 1956, 1962 (pre-independence); latest enacted 4 November 1972, effective 16 December 1972, suspended March 1982, restored November 1986
amendments: proposed by the House of the Nation; approval requires at least a two-thirds majority vote by the House membership, assented to by the president of the republic, and approved in a referendum by a majority of voters; amended many times, last in 2014 (2017)
history: previous 1947, 1974 (suspended until 2008); latest drafted 9 April 2008, approved by referendum 29 May 2008; amended 2015
amendments: proposals require at least 20% approval by the Assembly of the Union membership; passage of amendments to sections of the constitution on basic principles, government structure, branches of government, state emergencies, and amendment procedures requires 75% approval by the Assembly and approval in a referendum by absolute majority of registered voters; passage of amendments to other sections requires only 75% Assembly approval (2017)
Legal systemmixed legal system of mostly English common law and Islamic law
mixed legal system of English common law (as introduced in codifications designed for colonial India) and customary law
Suffrage18 years of age; universal
18 years of age; universal
Executive branchchief of state: President Abdul HAMID (since 24 April 2013); note - Abdul HAMID served as acting president following the death of Zillur RAHMAN in March 2013; HAMID was subsequently indirectly elected by the National Parliament and sworn in 24 April 2013
head of government: Prime Minister Sheikh HASINA (since 6 January 2009)
cabinet: Cabinet selected by the prime minister, appointed by the president
elections/appointments: president indirectly elected by the National Parliament for a 5-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 22 April 2013 (next to be held by 2018); the president appoints as prime minister the majority party leader in the National Parliament
election results: President Abdul HAMID (AL) elected by the National Parliament unopposed; Sheikh HASINA reappointed prime minister as leader of the majority AL party
"chief of state: President HTIN KYAW (since 30 March 2016); Vice Presidents MYINT SWE (since 30 March 2016) and HENRY VAN THIO (since 30 March 2016); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government
head of government: President HTIN KYAW (since 30 March 2016); Vice Presidents MYINT SWE (since 30 March 2016) and HENRY VAN THIO (since 30 March 2016)
note: a parliamentary bill creating the position of ""state counsellor"" was signed into law by President HTIN KYAW on 6 April 2016; a state counsellor serves the equivalent term of the president and is similar to a prime minister in that the holder acts as a link between the parliament and the executive branch
state counsellor: State Counselor AUNG SAN SUU KYI (since 6 April 2016); she concurrently serves as minister of foreign affairs and minister for the office of the president
cabinet: Cabinet appointments shared by the president and the commander-in-chief
elections/appointments: president indirectly elected by simple majority vote by the full Assembly of the Union from among 3 vice-presidential candidates nominated by the Presidential Electoral College (consists of members of the lower and upper houses and military members); the other 2 candidates become vice-presidents (president elected for a 5-year term); election last held on 15 March 2016 (next to be held in 2021)
election results: HTIN KYAW elected president; Assembly of the Union vote - HTIN KYAW (NLD) 360, MYINT SWE (USDP) 213, HENRY VAN THIO (NLD) 79 (652 votes cast)
"
Legislative branchdescription: unicameral House of the Nation or Jatiya Sangsad (350 seats; 300 members in single-seat territorial constituencies directly elected by simple majority popular vote; 50 members - reserved for women only - indirectly elected by the elected members by proportional representation vote using the single transferable vote method; all members serve 5-year terms)
elections: last held on 5 January 2014 (next to be held by January 2019); note - the 5 January 2014 poll was marred by widespread violence, boycotts, general strikes, and low voter turnout
election results: percent of vote by party - AL 79.1%, JP (Ershad) 11.3%, WP 2.1%, JSD 1.8%, other 1%, independent 4.8%; seats by party - AL 234, JP 34, WP 6, JSD 5, other 5, independent 15; 1 seat repolled
description: bicameral Assembly of the Union or Pyidaungsu consists of an upper house - the House of Nationalities or Amyotha Hluttaw, (224 seats; 168 members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by absolute majority vote with a second round if needed and 56 appointed by the military; members serve 5-year terms) and a lower house - the House of Representatives or Pyithu Hluttaw, (440 seats; 330 members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote and 110 appointed by the military; members serve 5-year terms)
elections: last held on 8 November 2015 (next to be held in 2020)
election results: Upper House - percent of vote by party - NLD 60.3%, USDP 4.9%, ANP 4.5%, SNLD 1.3%, military 25%, other 4%, ; seats by party - NLD 135, USDP 11, ANP 10, SNLD 3, ZCD 2, TNP 2, independent 2, other 3, military appointees 56; Lower House - percent of vote by party - NLD 58%, USDP 6.8%, ANP 2.7%, SNLD 2.7%, military 25%, other 4.8%; seats by party - NLD 255, USDP 30, ANP 12, SNLD 12, PNO 3, TNP 3, ZCD 2, LNDP 2, independent 1, other 3, canceled due to insurgence 7, military appointees 110
Judicial branchhighest court(s): Supreme Court of Bangladesh (organized into the Appellate Division with 7 justices and the High Court Division with 99 justices)
judge selection and term of office: chief justice and justices appointed by the president; justices serve until retirement at age 67
subordinate courts: subordinate courts: civil courts include: Assistant Judge's Court; Joint District Judge's Court; Additional District Judge's Court; District Judge's Court; criminal courts include: Court of Sessions; Court of Metropolitan Sessions; Metropolitan Magistrate Courts; Magistrate Court; special courts/tribunals
highest court(s): Supreme Court of the Union (consists of the chief justice and 7-11 judges)
judge selection and term of office: chief justice and judges nominated by the president, with approval of the Lower House, and appointed by the president; judges normally serve until mandatory retirement at age 70
subordinate courts: High Courts of the Region; High Courts of the State; Court of the Self-Administered Division; Court of the Self-Administered Zone; district and township courts; special courts (for juvenile, municipal, and traffic offenses); courts martial
Political parties and leadersAwami League or AL [Sheikh HASINA]
Bangladesh Nationalist Front or BNF [Abdul Kalam AZADI]
Bangladesh Nationalist Party or BNP [Khaleda ZIA]
Bangladesh Tariqat Federation or BTF [Syed Nozibul Bashar MAIZBHANDARI]
Jamaat-i-Islami Bangladesh or JIB (Mujibur RAHMAN)
Jatiya Party or JP (Ershad faction) [Hussain Mohammad ERSHAD]
Jatiya Party or JP (Manju faction) [Anwar Hossain MANJU]
Liberal Democratic Party or LDP [Oli AHMED]
National Socialist Party or JSD [KHALEQUZZAMAN]
Workers Party or WP [Rashed Khan MENON]
All Mon Region Democracy Party or AMRDP (vacant)
Arakan National Party or ANP (vacant) (formed from the 2013 merger of the Rakhine Nationalities Development Party and the Arakan League for Democracy)
National Democratic Force or NDF [KHIN MAUNG SWE]
National League for Democracy or NLD [AUNG SAN SUU KYI]
National Unity Party or NUP [THAN TIN]
Pa-O National Organization or PNO [AUNG KHAM HTI]
Shan Nationalities Democratic Party or SNDP [SAI AIK PAUNG]
Shan Nationalities League for Democracy or SNLD [KHUN HTUN OO]
Ta'ang National Party or TNP [AIK MONE]
Union Solidarity and Development Party or USDP [THAN HTAY]
Zomi Congress for Democracy or ZCD [PU CIN SIAN THANG]
numerous smaller parties
Political pressure groups and leadersAin o Salish Kendro (Centre for Law and Mediation) or ASK (legal aid and civil rights)
Bangladesh Center for Worker Solidarity or BCWS
Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee or BRAC [Sir Fasel Hasan ABED]
Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry or FBCCI [Md. Shafiul Islam (Mohiuddin)]
Ministry of Women's and Children's Affairs or MoWCA [Meher Afroze CHUMKI] (advocacy group to end gender-based violence)
Odikhar [Dr. C.R. ABRAR (human rights group)
other: associations of madrassa teachers; business associations, including those intended to promote international trade; development and advocacy NGOs associated with the Grameen Bank; environmentalists; Islamist groups; labor rights advocacy groups; NGOs focused on poverty alleviation, and international trade; religious leaders; tribal groups and advocacy organizations; union leaders
Thai border: Ethnic Nationalities Council or ENC
Federation of Trade Unions-Burma or FTUB (exiled trade union and labor advocates)
United Nationalities Federal Council or UNFC [NAI HONG SAR]
inside Burma: Kachin Independence Organization or KIO [Gen. LANYAW ZAWNG HRA]
Karen National Union or KNU [Gen. SAW MUTU SAY POE]
Karenni National People's Party or KNPP [KHUN ABEL TWEED]
United Wa State Army or UWSA [BAO YOU-XIANG]
88 Generation Students Group [collective leadership] (pro-democracy movement)
several other Chin, Karen, Mon, and Shan factions
note: many restrictions on freedom of expression have been relaxed by the government; a limited number of political groups, other than parties, are approved by the government
International organization participationADB, ARF, BIMSTEC, C, CD, CICA (observer), CP, D-8, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, MINURSO, MINUSMA, MONUSCO, NAM, OIC, OPCW, PCA, SAARC, SACEP, UN, UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNIFIL, UNMIL, UNMISS, UNOCI, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
ADB, ARF, ASEAN, BIMSTEC, CP, EAS, EITI (candidate country), FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO (correspondent), ITU, ITUC (NGOs), NAM, OPCW (signatory), SAARC (observer), UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
Diplomatic representation in the USchief of mission: Ambassador Mohammad ZIAUDDIN (since 18 September 2014)
chancery: 3510 International Drive NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 244-0183
FAX: [1] (202) 244-2771
consulate(s) general: Los Angeles, New York
chief of mission: Ambassador AUNG LYNN (since 16 September 2016)
chancery: 2300 S Street NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 332-3344
FAX: [1] (202) 332-4351
consulate(s) general: Los Angeles, New York
Diplomatic representation from the USchief of mission: Ambassador Marcia BERNICAT (since 4 February 2015)
embassy: Madani Avenue, Baridhara, Dhaka 1212
mailing address: G. P. O. Box 323, Dhaka 1000
telephone: [880] (2) 5566-2000
FAX: [880] (2) 5566-2915
chief of mission: Ambassador Scot MARCIEL (since 27 April 2016)
embassy: 110 University Avenue, Kamayut Township, Rangoon
mailing address: Box B, APO AP 96546
telephone: [95] (1) 536-509, 535-756, 538-038
FAX: [95] (1) 511-069
Flag descriptiongreen field with a large red disk shifted slightly to the hoist side of center; the red disk represents the rising sun and the sacrifice to achieve independence; the green field symbolizes the lush vegetation of Bangladesh
design consists of three equal horizontal stripes of yellow (top), green, and red; centered on the green band is a large white five-pointed star that partially overlaps onto the adjacent colored stripes; the design revives the triband colors used by Burma from 1943-45, during the Japanese occupation
National anthem"name: ""Amar Shonar Bangla"" (My Golden Bengal)
lyrics/music: Rabindranath TAGORE
note: adopted 1971; Rabindranath TAGORE, a Nobel laureate, also wrote India's national anthem
"
"name: ""Kaba Ma Kyei"" (Till the End of the World, Myanmar)
lyrics/music: SAYA TIN
note: adopted 1948; Burma is among a handful of non-European nations that have anthems rooted in indigenous traditions; the beginning portion of the anthem is a traditional Burmese anthem before transitioning into a Western-style orchestrated work
"
International law organization participationhas not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
National symbol(s)Bengal tiger, water lily; national colors: green, red
chinthe (mythical lion); national colors: yellow, green, red, white
Citizenshipcitizenship by birth: no
citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a citizen of Bangladesh
dual citizenship recognized: yes, but limited to select countries
residency requirement for naturalization: 5 years
citizenship by birth: no
citizenship by descent only: both parents must be citizens of Burma
dual citizenship recognized: no
residency requirement for naturalization: none
note: an applicant for naturalization must be the child or spouse of a citizen

Economy

BangladeshBurma
Economy - overviewBangladesh's economy has grown roughly 6% per year since 1996 despite prolonged periods of political instability, poor infrastructure, endemic corruption, insufficient power supplies, and slow implementation of economic reforms. Although more than half of GDP is generated through the services sector, almost half of Bangladeshis are employed in the agriculture sector, with rice as the single-most-important product.

Garment exports, the backbone of Bangladesh's industrial sector, accounted for more than 80% of total exports and surpassed $25 billion in 2016. The sector continues to grow, despite a series of high-profile factory accidents that have killed more than 1,000 workers and crippling strikes, including a nationwide transportation blockade orchestrated by the political opposition during the first several months of 2015. Steady export growth in the garment sector combined with remittances from overseas Bangladeshis - which totaled about $15 billion and 8% of GDP in 2015 - are key contributors to Bangladesh's sustained economic growth and rising foreign exchange reserves.
Since the transition to a civilian government in 2011, Burma has begun an economic overhaul aimed at attracting foreign investment and reintegrating into the global economy. Economic reforms have included establishing a managed float of the Burmese kyat in 2012, granting the Central Bank operational independence in July 2013, enacting a new anti-corruption law in September 2013, and granting licenses to nine foreign banks in 2014 and four more foreign banks in 2016. State Counselor AUNG SAN SUU KYI and the ruling National League for Democracy, who took power in March 2016, are seeking to improve Burma’s investment climate, following the US sanctions lift in October 2016 and reinstatement of Generalized System of Preferences trade benefits in November 2016. In October 2016, Burma passed a revised foreign investment law that consolidates investment regulations and eases the investment approval process. Parliament is also expected to pass amendments to the Companies Law and Gemstone Law later this year.

The government reforms since 2011 and the subsequent easing of most Western sanctions led to accelerated growth, from under 6% in 2011 to roughly 7% in 2013 through 2017. Burma’s abundant natural resources and young labor force are attracting foreign investment in the energy, garment, information technology, and food and beverage sectors.

Despite these improvements, living standards have not improved for the majority of the people residing in rural areas. Burma remains one of the poorest countries in Asia – approximately 26% of the country’s 51 million people live in poverty. The isolationist policies and economic mismanagement of previous governments have left Burma with poor infrastructure, endemic corruption, underdeveloped human resources, and inadequate access to capital, which will require a major commitment to reverse. The Burmese government has been slow to address impediments to economic development such as insecure land rights, a restrictive trade licensing system, an opaque revenue collection system, and an antiquated banking system. AUNG SAN SUU KYI’s government is focusing on accelerating agricultural productivity and land reforms, modernizing and opening the financial sector, and developing transportation and electricity infrastructure.
GDP (purchasing power parity)$686.5 billion (2017 est.)
$640.7 billion (2016 est.)
$597.8 billion (2015 est.)
note: data are in 2017 dollars
$330.9 billion (2017 est.)
$308.6 billion (2016 est.)
$290.8 billion (2015 est.)
note: data are in 2017 dollars
GDP - real growth rate7.1% (2017 est.)
7.2% (2016 est.)
6.8% (2015 est.)
7.2% (2017 est.)
6.1% (2016 est.)
7% (2015 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$4,200 (2017 est.)
$4,000 (2016 est.)
$3,700 (2015 est.)
note: data are in 2017 dollars
$6,300 (2017 est.)
$5,900 (2016 est.)
$5,600 (2015 est.)
note: data are in 2017 dollars
GDP - composition by sectoragriculture: 14.2%
industry: 29.2%
services: 56.5% (2017 est.)
agriculture: 24.8%
industry: 35.4%
services: 39.9% (2017 est.)
Population below poverty line31.5% (2010 est.)
25.6% (2016 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: 4%
highest 10%: 27% (2010 est.)
lowest 10%: 2.8%
highest 10%: 32.4% (1998)
Inflation rate (consumer prices)5.7% (2017 est.)
5.7% (2016 est.)
6.5% (2017 est.)
6.8% (2016 est.)
Labor force73.41 million
note: extensive migration of labor to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, UAE, Oman, Qatar, and Malaysia (2017 est.)
22.3 million (2017 est.)
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: 47%
industry: 13%
services: 40% (2010 est.)
agriculture: 70%
industry: 7%
services: 23% (2001 est.)
Unemployment rate4.1% (2017 est.)
4.1% (2016 est.)
note: about 40% of the population is underemployed; many persons counted as employed work only a few hours a week and at low wages
4% (2017 est.)
4% (2016 est.)
Budgetrevenues: $27.08 billion
expenditures: $39.31 billion (2017 est.)
revenues: $9.211 billion
expenditures: $11.45 billion (2017 est.)
Industriesjute, cotton, garments, paper, leather, fertilizer, iron and steel, cement, petroleum products, tobacco, pharmaceuticals, ceramics, tea, salt, sugar, edible oils, soap and detergent, fabricated metal products, electricity, natural gas
agricultural processing; wood and wood products; copper, tin, tungsten, iron; cement, construction materials; pharmaceuticals; fertilizer; oil and natural gas; garments; jade and gems
Industrial production growth rate8.2% (2017 est.)
9.6% (2017 est.)
Agriculture - productsrice, jute, tea, wheat, sugarcane, potatoes, tobacco, pulses, oilseeds, spices, fruit; beef, milk, poultry
rice, pulses, beans, sesame, groundnuts; sugarcane; fish and fish products; hardwood
Exports$35.91 billion (2017 est.)
$34.14 billion (2016 est.)
$10.07 billion (2017 est.)
$9.085 billion (2016 est.)
note: official export figures are grossly underestimated due to the value of timber, gems, narcotics, rice, and other products smuggled to Thailand, China, and Bangladesh
Exports - commoditiesgarments, knitwear, agricultural products, frozen food (fish and seafood), jute and jute goods, leather
natural gas; wood products; pulses and beans; fish; rice; clothing; minerals, including jade and gems
Exports - partnersUS 13.1%, Germany 12.7%, UK 8.6%, France 5.1%, Spain 5% (2016)
China 40.6%, Thailand 19.1%, India 8.8%, Singapore 7.6%, Japan 5.7% (2016)
Imports$42.38 billion (2017 est.)
$40.37 billion (2016 est.)
$15.33 billion (2017 est.)
$12.8 billion (2016 est.)
note: import figures are grossly underestimated due to the value of consumer goods, diesel fuel, and other products smuggled in from Thailand, China, Malaysia, and India
Imports - commoditiescotton, machinery and equipment, chemicals, iron and steel, foodstuffs
fabric; petroleum products; fertilizer; plastics; machinery; transport equipment; cement, construction materials; food products? edible oil
Imports - partnersChina 24.3%, India 13.4%, Singapore 5.1%, Japan 4.5% (2016)
China 33.9%, Singapore 14.3%, Thailand 12.5%, Japan 7.9%, India 6.9%, Malaysia 4.3% (2016)
Debt - external$45.07 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$41.85 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$9.713 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$8.2 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Exchange ratestaka (BDT) per US dollar -
80.69 (2017 est.)
78.468 (2016 est.)
78.468 (2015 est.)
77.947 (2014 est.)
77.614 (2013 est.)
kyats (MMK) per US dollar -
1,361.9 (2017 est.)
1,234.87 (2016 est.)
1,234.87 (2015 est.)
1,162.62 (2014 est.)
984.35 (2013 est.)
Fiscal year1 July - 30 June
1 April - 31 March
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$33.66 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$32.28 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$5.032 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$4.63 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Current Account Balance-$1.751 billion (2017 est.)
$1.381 billion (2016 est.)
-$4.393 billion (2017 est.)
-$3.789 billion (2016 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate)$250 billion (2016 est.)
$66.97 billion (2016 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares$50.98 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$41.73 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
$23.55 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
$NA
Central bank discount rate5% (30 October 2016)
5% (30 October 2015)
9.95% (31 December 2010)
12% (31 December 2009)
Commercial bank prime lending rate10.2% (31 December 2017 est.)
10.41% (31 December 2016 est.)
14% (31 December 2017 est.)
13% (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of domestic credit$144.9 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$133.3 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$28.48 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$23.08 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of narrow money$28.37 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$25.94 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$18.53 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$15.84 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Taxes and other revenues10.8% of GDP (2017 est.)
13.8% of GDP (2017 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-4.9% of GDP (2017 est.)
-3.3% of GDP (2017 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 67.5%
government consumption: 6.4%
investment in fixed capital: 30.3%
investment in inventories: 1%
exports of goods and services: 15.5%
imports of goods and services: -20.7% (2017 est.)
household consumption: 50.6%
government consumption: 15.2%
investment in fixed capital: 37.9%
investment in inventories: 2.6%
exports of goods and services: 20.6%
imports of goods and services: -26.9% (2017 est.)
Gross national saving29.7% of GDP (2017 est.)
30.9% of GDP (2016 est.)
30.3% of GDP (2015 est.)
16.2% of GDP (2017 est.)
16.5% of GDP (2016 est.)
19.3% of GDP (2015 est.)

Energy

BangladeshBurma
Electricity - production55.5 billion kWh (2015 est.)
15.48 billion kWh (2015 est.)
Electricity - consumption48.98 billion kWh (2015 est.)
12.91 billion kWh (2015 est.)
Electricity - exports0 kWh (2016 est.)
0 kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - imports0 kWh (2016 est.)
0 kWh (2016 est.)
Oil - production4,000 bbl/day (2016 est.)
15,000 bbl/day (2016 est.)
Oil - imports26,160 bbl/day (2014 est.)
28.5 bbl/day (2014 est.)
Oil - exports313 bbl/day (2014 est.)
2,814 bbl/day (2014 est.)
Oil - proved reserves28 million bbl (1 January 2017 es)
139 million bbl (1 January 2017 es)
Natural gas - proved reserves205.4 billion cu m (1 January 2017 es)
637.1 billion cu m (1 January 2017 es)
Natural gas - production26.86 billion cu m (2015 est.)
17.5 billion cu m (2015 est.)
Natural gas - consumption39.88 billion cu m (2015 est.)
4.766 billion cu m (2015 est.)
Natural gas - exports0 cu m (2013 est.)
13.91 billion cu m (2015 est.)
Natural gas - imports0 cu m (2013 est.)
0 cu m (2013 est.)
Electricity - installed generating capacity11.7 million kW (2015 est.)
4.783 million kW (2015 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels96.6% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
33.9% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants2% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
65.9% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels0% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
0% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources1.6% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
0.3% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - production25,720 bbl/day (2014 est.)
15,870 bbl/day (2014 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption107,000 bbl/day (2015 est.)
91,000 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports1,802 bbl/day (2014 est.)
0 bbl/day (2014 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports85,990 bbl/day (2014 est.)
73,260 bbl/day (2014 est.)
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy66 million Mt (2013 est.)
15 million Mt (2013 est.)
Electricity accesspopulation without electricity: 60,300,000
electrification - total population: 60%
electrification - urban areas: 90%
electrification - rural areas: 49% (2013)
population without electricity: 36,300,000
electrification - total population: 52%
electrification - urban areas: 95%
electrification - rural areas: 31% (2013)

Telecommunications

BangladeshBurma
Telephones - main lines in usetotal subscriptions: 772,369
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: less than 1 (July 2016 est.)
total subscriptions: 514,385
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 1 (July 2016 est.)
Telephones - mobile cellulartotal: 126,391,269
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 81 (July 2016 est.)
total: 48,728,399
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 86 (July 2016 est.)
Telephone systemgeneral assessment: inadequate for a modern country; introducing digital systems; trunk systems include VHF and UHF microwave radio relay links, and some fiber-optic cable in cities
domestic: fixed-line teledensity remains less than 1 per 100 persons; mobile-cellular telephone subscribership has been increasing rapidly and now exceeds 80 telephones per 100 persons
international: country code - 880; landing point for the SEA-ME-WE-4 fiber-optic submarine cable system that provides links to Europe, the Middle East, and Asia; satellite earth stations - 6; international radiotelephone communications and landline service to neighboring countries (2016)
general assessment: meets minimum requirements for local and intercity service for business and government
domestic: the government eased its monopoly on communications in 2013 and granted telecom licenses to three new operators, which has resulted in a dramatic expansion of the wireless network
international: country code - 95; landing point for the SEA-ME-WE-3 optical telecommunications submarine cable that provides links to Asia, the Middle East, and Europe; satellite earth stations - 2, Intelsat (Indian Ocean) and ShinSat (2016)
Internet country code.bd
.mm
Internet userstotal: 28,499,324
percent of population: 18.2% (July 2016 est.)
total: 14,264,308
percent of population: 25.1% (July 2016 est.)
Broadcast mediastate-owned Bangladesh Television (BTV) operates 1 terrestrial TV station, 3 radio networks, and about 10 local stations; 8 private satellite TV stations and 3 private radio stations also broadcasting; foreign satellite TV stations are gaining audience share in the large cities; several international radio broadcasters are available (2009)
government controls all domestic broadcast media; 2 state-controlled TV stations with 1 of the stations controlled by the armed forces; 2 pay-TV stations are joint state-private ventures; access to satellite TV is limited; 1 state-controlled domestic radio station and 9 FM stations that are joint state-private ventures; transmissions of several international broadcasters are available in parts of Burma; the Voice of America (VOA), Radio Free Asia (RFA), BBC Burmese service, the Democratic Voice of Burma (DVB), and Radio Australia use shortwave to broadcast in Burma; VOA, RFA, and DVB produce daily TV news programs that are transmitted by satellite to audiences in Burma; in March 2017, the government granted licenses to 5 private broadcasters, allowing them digital free-to-air TV channels to be operated in partnership with government-owned Myanmar Radio and Television (MRTV) and will rely upon MRTV’s transmission infrastructure; the new channels are expected to begin airing programming early in 2018 (2017)

Transportation

BangladeshBurma
Railwaystotal: 2,460 km
broad gauge: 659 km 1.676-m gauge
narrow gauge: 1,801 km 1.000-m gauge (2014)
total: 5,031 km
narrow gauge: 5,031 km 1.000-m gauge (2008)
Roadwaystotal: 21,269 km
paved: 2,021 km
unpaved: 19,248 km (2010)
total: 34,377 km (includes 358 km of expressways) (2010)
Waterways8,370 km (includes up to 3,060 km of main cargo routes; network reduced to 5,200 km in the dry season) (2011)
12,800 km (2011)
Pipelinesgas 2,950 km (2013)
gas 3,739 km; oil 1,321 km (2017)
Ports and terminalsmajor seaport(s): Chittagong
river port(s): Mongla Port (Sela River)
container port(s): Chittagong (1,392,104) (2011)
major seaport(s): Mawlamyine (Moulmein), Sittwe
river port(s): Rangoon (Yangon) (Rangoon River)
Merchant marinetotal: 306
by type: bulk carrier 28, container ship 4, general cargo 75, oil tanker 110, other 89 (2017)
total: 97
by type: bulk carrier 1, general cargo 43, Oil tanker 5, other 48 (2017)
Airports18 (2013)
64 (2013)
Airports - with paved runwaystotal: 16
over 3,047 m: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 2
1,524 to 2,437 m: 6
914 to 1,523 m: 1
under 914 m: 5 (2017)
total: 36
over 3,047 m: 12
2,438 to 3,047 m: 11
1,524 to 2,437 m: 12
under 914 m: 1 (2017)
Airports - with unpaved runwaystotal: 2
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
under 914 m: 1 (2013)
total: 28
over 3,047 m: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 4
914 to 1,523 m: 10
under 914 m: 13 (2013)
Heliports3 (2013)
11 (2013)
National air transport systemnumber of registered air carriers: 6
inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 30
annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 2,906,799
annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 182,692,553 mt-km (2015)
number of registered air carriers: 11
inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 45
annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 2,029,139
annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 3,365,967 mt-km (2015)
Civil aircraft registration country code prefixS2 (2016)
XY (2016)

Military

BangladeshBurma
Military branchesBangladesh Defense Force: Bangladesh Army (Sena Bahini), Bangladesh Navy (Noh Bahini, BN), Bangladesh Air Force (Biman Bahini, BAF) (2013)
Burmese Defense Service (Tatmadaw): Army (Tatmadaw Kyi), Navy (Tatmadaw Yay), Air Force (Tatmadaw Lay) (2013)
Military service age and obligation16-19 years of age for voluntary military service; Bangladeshi birth and 10th grade education required; initial obligation 15 years (2012)
18-35 years of age (men) and 18-27 years of age (women) for voluntary military service; no conscription (a 2010 law reintroducing conscription has not yet entered into force); 2-year service obligation; male (ages 18-45) and female (ages 18-35) professionals (including doctors, engineers, mechanics) serve up to 3 years; service terms may be stretched to 5 years in an officially declared emergency; Burma signed the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) on 15 August 1991; on 27 June 2012, the regime signed a Joint Action Plan on prevention of child recruitment; in February 2013, the military formed a new task force to address forced child conscription; approximately 600 children have been released from military service since the signing of the joint action plan (2015)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP1.44% of GDP (2016)
1.46% of GDP (2015)
1.36% of GDP (2014)
1.33% of GDP (2013)
1.41% of GDP (2012)
4.08% of GDP (2015)
3.58% of GDP (2014)
3.81% of GDP (2013)
3.71% of GDP (2012)

Transnational Issues

BangladeshBurma
Disputes - internationalBangladesh referred its maritime boundary claims with Burma and India to the International Tribunal on the Law of the Sea; Indian Prime Minister Singh's September 2011 visit to Bangladesh resulted in the signing of a Protocol to the 1974 Land Boundary Agreement between India and Bangladesh, which had called for the settlement of longstanding boundary disputes over undemarcated areas and the exchange of territorial enclaves, but which had never been implemented; Bangladesh struggles to accommodate 32,000 Rohingya, Burmese Muslim minority from Arakan State, living as refugees in Cox's Bazar; Burmese border authorities are constructing a 200 km (124 mi) wire fence designed to deter illegal cross-border transit and tensions from the military build-up along border
over half of Burma's population consists of diverse ethnic groups who have substantial numbers of kin in neighboring countries; the Naf River on the border with Bangladesh serves as a smuggling and illegal transit route; Bangladesh struggles to accommodate 29,000 Rohingya, Burmese Muslim minority from Arakan State, living as refugees in Cox's Bazar; Burmese border authorities are constructing a 200 km (124 mi) wire fence designed to deter illegal cross-border transit and tensions from the military build-up along border with Bangladesh in 2010; Bangladesh referred its maritime boundary claims with Burma and India to the International Tribunal on the Law of the Sea; Burmese forces attempting to dig in to the largely autonomous Shan State to rout local militias tied to the drug trade, prompts local residents to periodically flee into neighboring Yunnan Province in China; fencing along the India-Burma international border at Manipur's Moreh town is in progress to check illegal drug trafficking and movement of militants; over 100,000 mostly Karen refugees and asylum seekers fleeing civil strife, political upheaval, and economic stagnation in Burma were living in remote camps in Thailand near the border as of May 2017
Illicit drugstransit country for illegal drugs produced in neighboring countries
world's second largest producer of illicit opium with an estimated poppy cultivation totaling 55,500 hectares in 2015 and an estimated potential production of 647 mt of raw opium; Shan state is the source of 91% of Burma's poppy cultivation; lack of government will to take on major narcotrafficking groups and lack of serious commitment against money laundering continues to hinder the overall antidrug effort; major source of methamphetamine and heroin for regional consumption
Refugees and internally displaced personsrefugees (country of origin): 868,500 (Burma) (2018) (includes an estimated 656,000 Rohingya refugees who have fled conflict since 25 August 2017)
IDPs: 426,000 (conflict, development, human rights violations, religious persecution, natural disasters) (2016)
"IDPs: 644,000 (government offensives against armed ethnic minority groups near its borders with China and Thailand, natural disasters, forced land evictions) (2016)
stateless persons: 925,939 (2016); note - Rohingya Muslims, living predominantly in Rakhine State, are Burma's main group of stateless people; the Burmese Government does not recognize the Rohingya as a ""national race"" and stripped them of their citizenship under the 1982 Citizenship Law, categorizing them as ""non-nationals"" or ""foreign residents""; under the Rakhine State Action Plan drafted in October 2014, the Rohingya must demonstrate their family has lived in Burma for at least 60 years to qualify for a lesser naturalized citizenship and the classification of Bengali or be put in detention camps and face deportation; native-born but non-indigenous people, such as Indians, are also stateless; the Burmese Government does not grant citizenship to children born outside of the country to Burmese parents who left the country illegally or fled persecution, such as those born in Thailand
note: estimate does not include stateless IDPs or stateless persons in IDP-like situations because they are included in estimates of IDPs (2016)
"

Source: CIA Factbook