In South East Asia, Malaysia is a federal constitutional monarchy with thirteen states and three federal territories. In regard to total land area, Malaysia is the world’s 67th largest country, occupying a landmass of 329,847 square kilometers or 127,350 square miles in total. Malaysia has the South China Sea separating it into equally sized areas; Malaysian Borneo and Peninsular Malaysia. Its land is bordered by Indonesia, Thailand, and Brunei while its maritime is bordered by Vietnam, Singapore, and the Philippines. While Putrajaya is where federal government is located, Kuala Lumpur is Malaysia’s capital city.
The country has wide diversity in ethnics and cultures and it has a large impact on politics. Being the subject to the British Empire, Malaysian government system is very much like the parliamentary system of Westminster while its legal system is using English Common Law as its basis. In spite of its diversity in ethnics and cultures, Islam has been declared the state religion while freedom of religion remains protected. With a population of more or less 28,334,135, Malaysia is the world’s 43rd most populous country and the country is one of Asia’s most developed countries by infrastructure.
Inhabited by a number of ethnics, cultures, and multilingual society, Malaysia’s original culture rooted to the native tribes inhabiting it in conjunction to the Malays moving there later. Nevertheless, Chinese and Indian culture gives great influence to the country, and it started along with the beginning of foreign trade. Other ethnics that have influenced the culture of Malaysia are Arabic, Persian, and British, obviously. Finally, the government established a ‘National Cultural Policy’ in 1971, in which Malaysian culture was defined. The policy announced that the culture of Malaysia must take indigenous peoples of Malaysia’s culture as the basis, that it can include other cultures’ elements, and that Islam must have a part in the culture.
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