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Asia consists of 51 countries with a total land area of 45 million km² (17 million square miles), representing 30% of the Earth’s habitable surface. Asia's coastlines have a combined length of 220,266 km (136,896 miles). There are 4.69 billion people living in Asia — that's 59.5% of the world's population — and they account for around 38% of global economic output.

77% of Russia is also part of Asia. Since most of the inhabitants (85%) live in the European part of the country, Russia is listed in our overview of Europe. The border between Europe and Asia runs approximately along the Urals, located east of Moscow.

Turkey, on the other hand, is associated with the Near East. 88% of the population, 97% of the country's territory and the capital Ankara are located on the Asian continent.

* Countries marked with an asterisk are not sovereign states, but dependent territories. (Cf.: What is a country?)
Asia is the largest of all continents, stretching over a length of 11,000 km (6800 miles) and a width of over 8500 km (5300 miles) from the Arctic Sea to Australia, meaning there are many different climate zones. Asia holds a number of other superlatives; here, you will find, by far, the largest countries in the world. In terms of population, these are India and China. Even Asian parts of Russia are still much larger than any other country in the world. Bangladesh and South Korea, two Asian territorial states, lead the ranking in population density. Standing at 8,848 meters (29029 ft), Mount Everest in the Himalayas is the highest mountain. To the west is the Caspian Sea, the world's largest freshwater lake. At 357,000 km² (137,838 square qmiles), it is half the size of Texas.

In the southeast of Asia, there is the Malay Archipelago, a widely ramified island world that consists of many countries and reaches as far as Australia. Located here are most of the Earth’s volcanoes. From Japan over the Philippines to Indonesia, thousands of islands have a volcanic origin, referred to as the Pacific Firing, where numerous volcanoes are still active. Due to tectonic shifts of various Pacific plates, strong earthquakes repeatedly occur in these regions, triggering volcanoes and tsunamis.

Most widely spoken native languages in Asia

Chinese28.7 %1,346.1 M
Hindi12.3 %577.2 M
Bengali6.0 %279.5 M
Arabic3.4 %158.1 M
Punjabi3.2 %150.9 M
Japanese2.7 %124.6 M
Javanese2.3 %107.9 M
Telugu2.2 %101.3 M
Marathi2.1 %98.5 M
Urdu1.9 %88.7 M
Tamil1.9 %88.6 M
Vietnamese1.8 %85.5 M
Korean1.7 %78.3 M
Turkish1.6 %74.3 M
Gujarati1.3 %63.3 M