Indonesia

World's Largest Archipelago

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Basic Facts

Government- Presidential Republic

Capital- Jakarta

President- Joko Widodo

Language- Indonesian

Geography

Indonesia is both the largest country in southeast Asia and the largest archipelago, or chain of islands, in the world. It is made up of roughly 17,500 islands, of which more than 7,000 are uninhabited. Indonesia's physical features involve densely forested volcanic mountains (over 100 active volcanoes), coastal swamps, and coral reefs. It receives heavy rainfall year-round as well as seasonal monsoon winds, although typhoons and cyclones are rare here. The temperature varies more in terms of elevation than latitude. It is warmer near the coasts and colder in the mountains. The only mountain range in Indonesia that receives snow is the Maoke Mountains. Indonesia is bordered by Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, and East Timor.

Culture

Indonesia is the world's largest population of Muslims. It is made up of primarily Javanese and Sudanese ethnic groups. The literacy rate is 93.9%, with only a 4% male-female literacy gap. Most families have an average of two children.

Rice, coconut, and vegetables are common in Indonesian foods. Each region of Indonesia has its own unique dish, such as satay Padang, lalapal sambal, gado-gado, and nasi Gudeg.

Sports are an important part of Indonesian culture. Soccer is the most popular sports, along with bull racing, martial arts, and badminton. Watching television and playing chess are common leisurely activities. Indonesian arts include carving, painting, decorative masks, kites, and batik- a tapestry made by melting wax and dying on fabric.

Indonesians celebrate the Muslim holidays of Nyepi, Leberan, and Eid al-Adha. Their independence day is August 17, and is celebrated by a flag-raising ceremony and playing competitive games.

Economy

Indonesia is the strongest economy in Southeast Asia. Poverty (11.3%), unemployment (5.5%), and poor infrastructure are still prevalent, however. Indonesia's GDP per capita is $11,300. Indonesia's agricultural industries have caused a notable amount of deforestation. Frequent forest fires also contribute to the problem. Indonesia has not yet started taking measures to prevent its deforestation.

Indonesia is involved in ASEAN and OPEC. Its main exports are petroleum, textiles, mining, electrical machinery, rubber, palm oil, and cocoa.

Works Cited

Indonesia Regions Map. Digital image. Wikimedia Commons. Web. 13 May 2016.

Indonesian farms. Digital image. Pixabay. Web. 13 May 2016.

Indonesian Flag. Digital image. Enmodetendance.eu. Web. 13 May 2016.

"Indonesia." Britannica School. Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 2016. Web. 16 May. 2016.

Kartapratana, Gunawan. Indonesia Capital. Digital image. Wikimedia Commons. Web. 13 June 2016.

"Indonesia." CultureGrams Online Edition. ProQuest, 2016. Web. 5 May 2016.