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Country Profile:
Country Name Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka


South Asia - an island in the Indian Ocean
5°55’ - 9°50’ North Latitude and
79°42’ -81 52’ East Longitude
432 km North to South
224 km West to East

Total Area 65,610 sq. km  
Land Area 62,705 sq. km  
Inland Waters 2,905 sq. km  


Administrative Capital Sri Jayewardenepura
Commercial Capital Colombo
(2008) 20.2 Million

Population Growth Rate


% (2008)

Labour Force 7.6 Million (2008)
Unemployment Rate 5.2

% (2008)

Composition of Population  

By Ethincity









By Religion










Official Languages Sinhala and Tamil
Link Language


Life Expectancy  
Male 72.81 Yrs
Female 76.88 Yrs (2007 est.)

Literacy Rate


Per Capital GDP US $ 2,014 (2008)

Composition of GDP (2008)

Agricultural 12.1%
Industry      28.4%
Services     59.5%

US$ 8.1 Bn (2008)


US$ 14.0 Bn (2008)

International Airport

Bandaranaike International Airport in Katunayake

National Airline

Sri Lankan Airlines


Tropical-average 28°C
Central hills-cooler 14°C
North-east monsoon: Nov-Jan
South-west monsoon : May-July


GMT + 6 hours


Sri Lanka Rupee (I US $ = 108.33 SL Rs.in 2008)

Sri Lanka's Map
The National Anthem:

Sri Lanka which was under the British Colonial rule became an Independent Country with effect from 4th February, 1948

For the National Anthem of the newly independent Sri Lanka, a competition was held in January, 1948. The Anthem selected was “Namo Namo Matha” composed by Ananda Sanarakoon. It was sung for the first time in public and broadcasted over the radio on the Independence Day in 1948 by a choir of 500 students from Musaeus College in Colombo

The opening words of the National Anthem are
“Sri Lanka Matha – Apa Sri Lanka, Namo Namo…”
Mother Lanka, we worship you.

Sri Lanka Matha, apa Sri Lanka,
Namo Namo Namo Namo Matha.
Sundara siri barini,
Surändi athi Sobamana Lanka
Dhanya dhanaya neka mal pala thuru piri, jaya bhoomiya ramya.
Apa hata säpa siri setha sadana, jee vanaye Matha!
Piliganu mana apa bhakti pooja,
Namo Namo Matha.
Apa Sri Lanka,
Namo Namo Namo Namo Matha,
apa Sri Lanka, Namo Namo Namo Namo Matha.

Obave apa vidya obamaya apa sathya obave apa shakti
apa hada thula bhakti oba apa aloke
apage anuprane oba apa jeevana ve
apa muktiya obave
Nava jeevana demine nithina apa
Pubudu karan matha
Gnana veerya vadavamina ragena yanu
mana jaya bhoomi kara
Eka mavekuge daru kala bavina
yamu yamu wee nopama
Prema vadamu sama bheda durara da Namo Namo Matha

Sri Lanka Thaayé, nam Sri Lanka,
Namo Namo Namo Namo Thaayé.
Nallelil poli Seeranee,
Nalangal yaavum Niraivaan mani Lanka
Gnaalam puhala vala vayal nathi malai malar narum solai kol Lanka.
Namathuru puhalidam ena olir vaai, namathuyire Thaayé!
Namathalai ninathadi mail vyththomé
Namo Namo Thaayé.
Nam Sri Lanka,
Namo Namo Namo Namo Thaayé,
Nam Sri Lanka,
Namo Namo Namo Namo Thaayé.
Mother Lanka - we salute Thee!
Plenteous in prosperity, Thou,
Beauteous in grace and love,
Laden with corn and luscious fruit
And fragrant flowers of radiant hue,
Giver of life and all good things,
Our land of joy and victory,
Receive our grateful praise sublime,
Lanka! we worship Thee.
Thou gavest us Knowledge and Truth,
Thou art our strength and inward faith,
Our light divine and sentient being,
Breath of life and liberation.
Grant us, bondage free, inspiration.
Inspire us for ever.
In wisdom and strength renewed,
Ill-will, hatred, strife all ended,
In love enfolded, a mighty nation
Marching onward, all as one,
Lead us, Mother, to fullest freedom
National Flag:

The National Flag of Sri Lanka represents the country and her heritage as rallying device that integrates the minorities with the majority race.

Sri Lanka National Flag is an improvisation of the civil standard of the last king of Sri Lanka, Sri Wickrama Rajasingha. The civil standard had a passant royal lion with a sword in it's right fore paw at the center, and a bo-leaf on each of the four corners on a plain border.

When Sri Lanka gained her independence from Great Britain on February 04, 1948, it was the lion flag of the last king of Sri Lanka was hoisted once again.

The first Prime Minister of independent Sri Lanka, D.S.Senanayake, appointed a committee to advice the government on the design of a new national flag. The design approved by the committee in February 1950 retained the symbol of the lion with the sword and the bo-leaves from the civil standard of the last king of Sri Lanka, with the inclusion of two verticle stripes green and orange in color. the significance of each symbol of the national flag is as follows:

  • The lion in the flag represents the Sinhala race.
  • The sword of the lion represents the sovereignty of the country.
  • Curly hair on the lion's head indicates religious observance, wisdom and meditation.
  • The beard denotes purity of words.
  • The handle of the sword highlights the elements of water, fire, air and earth.
  • The nose indicates intelligence.
  • The two front paws purport to purity in handling wealth.
  • The verticle stripe of orange represent the minority Tamil race and the green verticle stripe the minority Muslim race.
  • The four virtues of kindness: KINDNESS, FRIENDLINESS, HAPPINESS, EQUANIMITY are also represented in the flag.
  • The border round the flag, which is yellow in color, represents other minor races.
  • The bo-leaves at the four corners of the flag represent Buddhism and it's influence on the nation. They also stand for the four virtues - Kindness, Friendliness, Happiness and Equanimity.
  • The maroon colored portion of the flag manifests the other minor religions.
The national flag was hoisted for the first time on March 3, 1950.
National Emblem:

Sri Lanka used the British emblem when it was a British Crown Colony . We continued to use it even after gaining independence in 1948 . According to the recommendation of a select committee appointed to devise a state emblem more suitable for Sri Lanka (Ceylon) we opted for a new emblem . It had lion with a ‘Palapethi’ design atop . Below there was a strip carrying the country’s name in Sinhala ,Tamil and English . A new republican emblem was chosen after the country was declared a Republic on May 22nd ,1972 . In addition to the lion with sword and the ‘Palapethi ‘design it portrays the punkalasa , dhamachakka , sun , moon and two sheaves of paddy.

National Tree:

A proposal made to declare the Na Tree as the National Tree was adopted by the Cabinet on February 26th ,1986 , Socially and culturally we have been closely associated with the Na Tree for centuries. It was chosen as the National Tree for 7 reasons.
(1) It is a tree which originated in Sri Lanka;
(2) Its utility
(3) Historical and Cultural importance;
(4) Exteror posture;
(5) Wide distribution;
(6) Color and Nature;
(7) Ability to draw and sketch it easy ;
National Bird:

Jungle fowl the National Bird of Sri Lanka is commonest in the National Parks and forests .

National Flower:

This , the “ Nil Mahanel ” botanical name “Nympheae Stelleta” has been the national flower of Sri Lanka from 1986.The Nil Mahanel plant grows in shallow , warm water , and is found in all parts of the country.

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