Official Name: Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal
Currency: Nepali Rupees (NRs.)
National flower: Rhododendron
National bird: Himalayan Monal (Danphe)
National Animal: Cow
Nepal is a federal democratic republic country with an elected parliament. Nepal’s legislature is unicameral with a total of 601 members. According to the interim constitution of Nepal 2007, there are three organs of the government, namely Executive, Legislative and Judiciary.
The head of state is President who has a ceremonial role in the government. The Prime Minister elected by the parliament is the head of government vested with executive powers.
Total Area: 147,181 sq km (56,827 sq mi)
Lowest point: 59m (above sea level)
Highest point: Mt. Everest -8848m (above sea level)
Borders: Nepal shares its border with China in the North and India in the South, East and West.
Number of National Parks, Reserves and Conservation Areas: 20
Nepal is bounded by the chain of Himalayas in the North and tropical forests in the South. Nepal’s topography can be roughly divided into four broad areas: Transhimalayan region (4500-5000m), Mountain region (3000-5000m), Hill Region (700-3000m) and Terai Region (60-700m). Nepal is home to eight of the world’s ten highest mountains in the world including Mt. Everest, the world’s tallest mountain. It has over 1900 peaks that are over 5500 meters.
25% of Nepal’s land is covered with forests. Himalayas and glaciers are a perennial source of freshwater. Much of the population in South Asia depends on these freshwater to meet their day to day need. The potential of generating hydropower from its rivers and rivulets in Nepal stands at 42,000 MWs.
Nepal has four major seasons: Spring (Mar-May), Summer (June –Aug), Autumn (Sep-Nov) and Winter (Dec-Feb). The Himalayan monsoon season falls between June to August.
Given its diverse geography climate may vary from hot to cold depending on which part of the country you are in and in which season. The temperature in Terai in the South may exceed 35 degrees Celsius while in winter ranges from 7 to 23 degree Celsius. The climate in mountainous region in the summer is 20 to 25 degrees where as in winter it can go down below zero. Valleys like Kathmandu and Pokhara have ideal pleasant climate with temperatures ranging between 5-15 degree Celsius in winter and 20-35 during summer.
The average rainfall in Nepal is 1600mm though it rains lot in valleys like Pokhara and less as we go higher up the mountains.
Total Population: 26.49 million (CBS 2011)
Caste/Ethnic Groups: 125 (CBS 2011)
Language: Over 123 ethnic languages. The official language used at government level and administration is Nepali.
Literacy Rate: 65.9%
Religion: Hindu, Buddhists, Islam, Kirat, Christianity, Prakriti, Bon, Jainism, Bahai, Sikhism
Nepal is one of the least developed nations in the world. Though rich in natural diversity and human resources, Nepal still faces political and policy challenges in its path to economic development. It holds immense potential in the areas of agriculture, hydropower and tourism. Of late remittances sent by Nepalis from abroad makes up the largest share of GDP after agriculture.