The Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka (commonly known as Sri Lanka is a country off the southern coast of the Indian subcontinent. An island nation in South Asia, it was until 1972 known as Ceylon . Sri Lanka is surrounded by the Indian Ocean, the Gulf of Mannar, the Palk Strait and lies in the vicinity of India and Maldives.
Sri Lanka is a republic and a unitary state which is governed by a semi-presidential system with its official seat of government in Sri Jayawardenapura-Kotte, the capital.
As a result of its location in the path of major sea routes, Sri Lanka is a strategic naval link between West Asia and South East Asia. It has also been a center of the Buddhist religion and culture from ancient times and is one of the few remaining abodes of Buddhism in South Asia along with Ladakh,Bhutan and the Chittagong hill tracts The Sinhalese community forms the majority of the population; Tamils, who are concentrated in the north and east of the island, form the largest ethnic minority. Other communities include Moors, Burghers, Kaffirs, Malays and the aboriginal Vedda people.
The country is famous for the production and export of tea, coffee, coconuts, rubber and cinnamon, the latter which is native to the country. The natural beauty Sri Lanka has led to the title The Pearl of the Indian Ocean, it is full of lush tropical forests, white beaches and diverse landscape throughout along with a rich biodiversity. The country lays claim to a long and colorful history of over three thousand years, having one of the longest documented histories in the world. Sri Lanka's rich culture can be attributed to the many different communities in the island. Sri Lanka is a founding member state of SAARC and a member United Nations, Commonwealth of Nations, G77 and Non-Aligned Movement