|Demographics of Malaysia|
|GDP (PPP) per capita||56th||$13,315|
|Unemployment rate||↓ 31st||3.10%*|
|CO 2 emissions||54th||7.05t†|
|Human Development Index||63rd||0.811|
|Corruption (A higher score means less (perceived) corruption.)||↓ 43rd||5.1|
|Number of Internet users||23rd||14,904,000 users|
|Ease of Doing Business||24th||Unknown|
|* including several non-sovereign
↓ indicates rank is in reverse order (e.g. 1st is lowest)
† per capita
± score out of 10
‡ per 1000 people
†† per woman
‡‡ per 1000 live births
The demographics of Malaysia is represented by the multiple ethnic groups that exist in this country. Malaysia's population, as of September 2008, is estimated to be 27,730,000, which makes it the 43rd most populated country in the world. Of these, 5.44 million Malaysians live in East Malaysia and 21.2 million live in Peninsular Malaysia. Malaysian population continues to grow at a rate of 2.4% per annum; about 34% of the population is under the age of 15. Malays and other Bumiputera groups make up 65% of the population, Chinese 26%, Indians 8% and other unlisted ethnic groups 1%. 
Population distribution is uneven, with some 20 million residents concentrated in the lowlands of Peninsular Malaysia, which has an area of 131,598 square kilometers and is slightly smaller than the State of Louisiana in the United States.
Malays are an ethnic group of Austronesian peoples predominantly inhabiting the Malay Peninsula and parts of Sumatra and Borneo. In Malaysia, they make up about half of the total population. The Malay ethnic group is distinct from the concept of a Malay race, which encompasses a wider group of people, including most of Indonesia and the Philippines. Malays in Malaysia are by definition Muslims, according to the constitution.
There are other peoples of Austronesian origins who make up the majority of the population in East Malaysia. Together with the Malays, they are collectively denoted as Bumiputras. Non-Malay bumiputera groups make up more than half of the state of Sarawak's population (of which 30% are Ibans), and close to 60% of Sabah's population (of which 18% are Kadazan-Dusuns, and 17% are Bajaus). They are divided into dozens of ethnic groups, but they share some general patterns of living and culture.
The indigenous peoples of Peninsular Malaysia are known as Orang Asli, which literally means "original person", is a catch all term for a variety of ancient peoples. They number about 60,000, and were the first inhabitants of the area. The most numerous of the Orang Asli are called Negritos and are related to native Papuans in Indonesia and Papua New Guinea, and possibly even to aborigines in Australia.
The term "Orang Asli" is specifically used to describe indigenous peoples in Peninsular Malaysia only. Collectively, the indigenous groups of Peninsular Malaysia and East Malaysia is known as "Orang Asal".
The second largest ethnic group is Chinese who makes up over a quarter of the population and have historically played an important role in trade and business. Indians made up of largely Tamils, comprise the third largest ethnic group at 8% of the population. There is a small minority crudely grouped and known as the "Others" category which includes Malaysians of, inter alia, European and Middle Eastern descent.
There is no general consensus on the ethnic profiling of children of mixed parentage. Some choose to be identified according to paternal ethnicity while others simply think that they fall in the "Others" category. The majority choose to identify as Malay as long as either parent is Malay, mainly due to the legal definition of Bumiputera. Children of Chinese-Indian parentage are known as Chindians. Though this is not an official category in National Census Data, it is an increasing number especially in urban areas.
Unlike counterparts in neighbouring Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines, many Malaysia Chinese and Indians, predominantly those in Peninsular Malaysia, are unable to assimilate or integrate into Bumiputera society due to various discriminatory policies practiced by the government.
|Han Chinese, Hokkien||1,848,211|
|Han Chinese, Hakka||1,679,027|
|Han Chinese, Cantonese||1,355,541|
|Han Chinese, Teochew||974,573|
|Han Chinese, Mandarin||958,467|
|Han Chinese, Hainanese||380,781|
|Han Chinese, Min Bei||373,337|
|Malay, East Malaysia||271,979|
|Han Chinese, Min Dong||249,413|
Islam is the largest and the official religion, other large religions include Buddhism, Hinduism, and Christianity. Minority religions practiced here are Sikhism, Daoism, Confucianism, shamanism, and animism. The breakdown of the major religions are follows:
Malay (Bahasa Melayu) is the official language of the nation. Other languages spoken in the country are Chinese dialects (Mandarin, Cantonese, Hokkien, Hakka, Teochew, Hainan, Foochow), Indian languages (Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Punjabi) ; note - in addition, in East Malaysia several indigenous languages are spoken, the largest of which are Iban and Kadazan.
English is also widely spoken by Malaysians and it is also a compulsory subject in primary and secondary education. The English language is sometimes used in official correspondence and examinations is based on British English though there has been much American influence through television. However, English as spoken in Malaysia has been diverging, and is known locally as Manglish. Manglish is very similar to Singlish, the English spoken in Singapore, though the slang terms tend to be different.
|State||Population||Area (km2)||Pop. density||Urban pop.(%)||Bumiputera (%)||Chinese (%)||Indian (%)|
|FT Kuala Lumpur||1,379,310||243||5676||100.0||38.6||46.5||13.4|
Source: National Census 2000, Department of Statistics Malaysia. Putrajaya data is for 2004.
|Year||< 15 Years (%)||15 - 64 Years (%)||> 64 Years (%)||Population (in millions)|
Data from January 2009
Kuala Lumpur is the capital and largest city of Malaysia. Although many executive and judicial branches of the federal government have moved to Putrajaya, Kuala Lumpur is the seat of the Parliament of Malaysia, making it the country's legislative capital. It is also the economic and business centre of the country, and is a primate city. Kuala Lumpur is also rated as a gamma world city, and is the only global city in Malaysia.
Subang Jaya and Klang are the second and third largest urban areas in Malaysia. The former is a higher education hub, containing many colleges and universities, and the latter houses Port Klang, the 16th busiest container port and 13th busiest transshipment port in the world. Johor Bahru is the second largest city and fourth largest urban area in the country. It is close to Singapore, and receives more than 60% of the country's annual 16 million foreign tourists. The city is also an important industrial, tourism and commercial hub for southern Malaysia.
|1||Kuala Lumpur||Federal Territory||1,458,790||11||Cheras||Selangor||460,699|
|3||Klang||Selangor||1,004,194||13||Seremban||Negeri Sembilan||405 674|
|8||Shah Alam||Selangor||577,626||18||Kota Bahru||Kelantan||276,592|
|10||Petaling Jaya||Selangor||535,658||20||Sungai Petani||Kedah||250,912|
|* Cities are listed in bold, and towns are not .|
Malaysian Malays are mixed people of various ancestries. Many have different ancestries from all over the world.
|Acehnese||20,000 - 1,000,000|
|Arab||500,000 - 1,000,000|
|Cham||10,000 - 100,000|
|Chinese||217,100 - 500,000|
|Indian||200,000 - 1,000,000|
|Javanese||1,283,946 - 3,000,000|
|Minangkabau||300,000 - 1,000,000|
|Vietnamese||200,000 - 1,000,000|