Note: The capitalized portions of non-Chinese names in this article are frequently the more familiar components, rather than “family” names in the Western sense.
Political Status: Independent Federation of Malaya within the Commonwealth established August 31, 1957; Malaysia established September 16, 1963, with the addition of Sarawak, Sabah, and Singapore (which withdrew in August 1965).
Area: 127,316 sq. mi. (329,749 sq. km.), encompassing Peninsular Malaysia, 50,806 sq. mi. (131,588 sq. km.); Sarawak, 48,050 sq. mi. (124,450 sq. km.); Sabah, 28,460 sq. mi. (73,711 sq. km.).
Population: 23,274,690 (2000C, incorporating adjustment for underenumeration, including Peninsular Malaysia, 18,599,699; Sabah, 2,603,485; Sarawak, 2,071,506); 26,692,000 (2006E).
Major Urban Centers (2005E): KUALA LUMPUR (1,390,000), Kelang (Klang, 735,000), Ipoh (630,000). The new administrative capital, Putrajaya, is 25 miles south of Kuala Lumpur.
Official Language: Bahasa Malaysia.