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Home >> Travel Guide >> Malaysia >> General Information
General Information
The Country
Malaysia has thirteen states which consist of eleven on the Peninsula (West Malaysia) and two, Sabah and Sarawak, on the island of Borneo (East Malaysia). Kuala Lumpur is the capital city. Putrajaya is the new administrative centre, which is approximately a 30-minute drive from the capital.

Malaysia Flag


Kuala Lumpur

Main Airport
Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) in Sepang, about 75 km from Kuala Lumpur.

Geographical Location
Malaysia (West and East Malaysia) land area is roughly 328,550 sq km (about half size of Thailand). It lies at 7° north of the Equator. Thailand borders the former to the north, Singapore to the south, South China Sea to the east and Straits of Malacca to the west. The latter, is bound by Indonesia to the south, the South China Sea to the west and north and Sulu Sea to the northeast.

Highest Peaks
Gunung Kinabalu, Sabah (4,101m); Gunung Tahan (2,187m)

Longest Rivers
Sungai Rejang, Sarawak( 560km) ; Sungai Pahang (432km)

Malaysia’s climate is warm, tropical climate (with general temperatures ranging from 21°C to 32°C) and strongly influenced by the Northeast and the Southwest Monsoons.

May – September: Drier period
November – February: Rainy season (East coast of West Malaysia and the states in East Malaysia)

Time Zone
Malaysia’s time zone is GMT/UTC +8, which is eight hours ahead of Greenwich Meridian Time (GMT), sixteen hours ahead of US Pacific Standard Time, and thirteen hours ahead of Eastern Standard. However, Daylight Saving Time is not applicable to the country.

The Government
Malaysia adopts a system of parliamentary democracy with a constitutional monarchy. There is a Prime Minister and full cabinet. The Yang di-Pertuan Agong or King is elected every five years in accordance with a rotating succession system determined by the Conference of Rulers, which comprises of Sultans. Nine states have a Sultan as head of state, while four have Governors. The three Federal Territories are administered by a Major. Power is concentrated in the hand s of the Federal Government, except got issues involving land, culture, and religion, which are decided at the State-level.

27.17 million: Malays (13.77 million), Other indigenous people (2.9 million), Chinese (6.3 million), Indians (1.88 million), Other Malaysians (326,000), Foreign Workers (1.91 million)

Annual growth rate

Racial Composition
Malay 50.2%, Chinese 24.5%, indigenous 11.0%, Indian 7.2%, non-Malaysian citizens 5.9%, others 1.2%.

Islam is the official religion in Malaysia. However, one can practice one’s religion freely. The myriad places of worships bear testament to this. The variety of religions found in Malaysia is a direct reflection of the diversity of races living includes Buddhism, Hinduism, Taoism, and Sikhism.

The official language is Bahasa Malaysia (Malay Language), but English is widely spoken. Other major languages spoken are Tamil, Punjabi, Chinese dialects (Mandarin, Cantonese, Hokkien, Hakka, Hainan, Foochow), and several indigenous languages (Iban, Kadazan) in East Malaysia.
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