Myanmar Minorities

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Myanmar is a union of many ethno-lingquistic groups. 135 groups have been recognized, each of which belongs to one of 8 general groups. The largest general group are the Burmese with approximately 68% of the population, concentrated in the 7 central populous administrative divisions of the country. The other 7 general ethnic groups each has its own state, although individuals are not compelled to live in any particular state. The Shan (or Tai) with 9% of the population are primarily in the south and east near the Thailand border. The Kayin (Karen) are in the southeast with 4% of the population. The Rakhine (Arakan) populations located in the south-west near Bangladesh also have 4%. The Mon (Talaing) have 2% of the population and are located in the south. The Chin are in the west near India and Bangladesh with 2%. The Kayah (Karenni) groups are in the east with 2%. The Kachin (Jinghpaw) groups are in the north near China and India with 1%. Ethnic Chinese constitute 3% of the current population. Ethnic Indians constitute 2% of the population. Other smaller groups constitute 3% of the population.[1]


  1. The Family History Department of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, “Family History Record Profile: Myanmar,” Word document, private files of the FamilySearch Content Strategy Team, 2001.