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    Laos Index 2005

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    Laos Geography - 2005

      Southeastern Asia, northeast of Thailand, west of Vietnam

      Geographic coordinates:
      18 00 N, 105 00 E

      Map references:
      Southeast Asia

      total: 236,800 sq km
      land: 230,800 sq km
      water: 6,000 sq km

      Area - comparative:
      slightly larger than Utah

      Land boundaries:
      total: 5,083 km
      border countries: Burma 235 km, Cambodia 541 km, China 423 km, Thailand 1,754 km, Vietnam 2,130 km

      0 km (landlocked)

      Maritime claims:
      none (landlocked)

      tropical monsoon; rainy season (May to November); dry season (December to April)

      mostly rugged mountains; some plains and plateaus

      Elevation extremes:
      lowest point: Mekong River 70 m
      highest point: Phou Bia 2,817 m

      Natural resources:
      timber, hydropower, gypsum, tin, gold, gemstones

      Land use:
      arable land: 3.8%
      permanent crops: 0.35%
      other: 95.85% (2001)

      Irrigated land:
      1,640 sq km
      note: rainy season irrigation - 2,169 sq km; dry season irrigation - 750 sq km (1998 est.)

      Natural hazards:
      floods, droughts

      Environment - current issues:
      unexploded ordnance; deforestation; soil erosion; most of the population does not have access to potable water

      Environment - international agreements:
      party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection
      signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

      Geography - note:
      landlocked; most of the country is mountainous and thickly forested; the Mekong River forms a large part of the western boundary with Thailand

      NOTE: The information regarding Laos on this page is re-published from the 2005 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Laos Geography 2005 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Laos Geography 2005 should be addressed to the CIA.

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    Revised 16-Feb-06
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