Sri Lanka

Facts & Figures

Map of Sri Lanka
  • President: Maithripala Sirisena (2015)

    Prime Minister: Ranil Wickremesinghe (2015)

    Land area: 24,996 sq mi (64,740 sq km); total area: 25,332 sq mi (65,610 sq km)

    Population (2014 est.): 21,866,445 (growth rate: 0.86%); birth rate: 16.24/1000; infant mortality rate: 9.47/1000; life expectancy: 76.35; density per sq mi: 836.6

    Capital and largest city (2011 est.): Colombo, 693,000. Legislative and judicial capital: Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte, 126,000

    Other large cities: Dehiwala-Mount Lavinia 245,974; Moratuwa, 207,755; Negombo, 127,754

    Monetary unit: Sri Lanka rupee

    Current government officials

    Languages: Sinhala 74% (official and national), Tamil 18% (national), other 8%; English is commonly used in government and spoken competently by about 10%

    Ethnicity/race: Sinhalese 73.8%, Sri Lankan Moors 7.2%, Indian Tamil 4.6%, Sri Lankan Tamil 3.9%, other 0.5%, unspecified 10% (2001)

    Religions: Buddhist 69.1%, Islam 7.6%, Hindu 7.1%, Christian 6.2%, unspecified 10% (2001)

    Literacy rate: 91.2% (2010 est.)

    Economic summary: GDP/PPP (2013 est.): $134.5 billion; per capita $6,500. Real growth rate: 6.3%. Inflation: 4.7%. Unemployment: 5.1%. Arable land: 18.29%. Agriculture: rice, sugarcane, grains, pulses, oilseed, spices, vegetables, fruit, tea, rubber, coconuts; milk, eggs, hides, beef; fish. Labor force: 8.528 million (2013 est.); services 42.4%, agriculture 31.8%, industry 25.8% (2012 est.). Industries: processing of rubber, tea, coconuts, tobacco and other agricultural commodities; telecommunications, insurance, banking; tourism, shipping; clothing, textiles; cement, petroleum refining, information technology services, construction. Natural resources: limestone, graphite, mineral sands, gems, phosphates, clay, hydropower. Exports: $10.39 billion (2013 est.): textiles and apparel, tea and spices; rubber manufactures; precious stones; coconut products, fish. Imports: $18 billion (2013 est.): petroleum, textiles, machinery and transportation equipment, building materials, mineral products, foodstuffs. Major trading partners: U.S., UK, India, Germany, Singapore, UAE, China, Iran, Malaysia, Italy, Belgium (2012).

    Communications: Telephones: main lines in use: 2.796 million (2013); mobile cellular: 19.533 million (2013). Radio broadcast stations: 50 (2012). Radios: 3.85 million (1997). Television broadcast stations: 35 (2012). Televisions: 1.53 million (1997). Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 9,552 (2012). Internet users: 1.777 million (2009).

    Transportation: Railways: total: 1,449 km (2007). Highways: total: 114,093 km; paved: 16,977 km; unpaved: 97,116 km (2010). Waterways: 160 km; navigable by shallow-draft craft (2012). Ports and harbors: Colombo, Galle, Jaffna, Trincomalee. Airports: 19 (2013).

    International disputes: none.

    Member of Commonwealth of Nations

    Major sources and definitions

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