Ethnic diversity in Myanmar

Myanmar is an ethnically diverse country; only 68% of the inhabitants of Myanmar are actually Bamar (Burmese). The Shan, with 10% of the population, are the largest other ethnic group, with the Karen/Kayin making up another 7%.

Geographically, the Bamar are most represented in the great plains between Mandalay and Yangon, along the Ayeyarwady river, while other ethnicities tend to be represented in the hills and mountains to the east and north of the country. In the east and north, there are Shan, Kachin and Kayar people, while Rakhine and Chin people inhabit the west. The Mon minority in the south of the country is now largely assimilated. 

There are also minority Chinese and Muslim populations in the major cities, where they are often involved in commerce.

Ethnic diversity can mean religious diversity too. For instance, most of the Chin are Christian, while the 2% Indian population are Hindu, Sikh, Christian and Muslim.

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