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Geography:Finland is three times the size of Ohio. It is heavily forested and contains thousands of lakes, numerous rivers, and extensive areas of marshland. Except for a small highland region in the extreme northwest, the country is a lowland less than 600 ft (180 m) above sea level. Off the southwest coast are the Swedish-populated Åland Islands (581 sq mi; 1,505 sq km), which have had an autonomous status since 1921.

History: The first inhabitants of Finland were the Sami (Lapp) people. When Finnish speakers migrated to Finland in the first millennium B.C. , the Sami were forced to move northward to the arctic regions, with which they are traditionally associated. The Finns' repeated raids on the Scandinavian coast impelled Eric IX, the Swedish king, to conquer the country in 1157. It was made a part of the Swedish kingdom and converted to Christianity. By 1809 the whole of Finland was conquered by Alexander I of Russia, who set up Finland as a grand duchy. The period of Russification (1809–1914) sapped Finnish political power and made Russian the country's official language. When Russia became engulfed by the March Revolution of 1917, Finland seized the opportunity to declare independence on Dec. 6, 1917. The USSR attacked Finland on Nov. 30, 1939, after Finland refused to give in to Soviet territorial demands. The Finns staged a strong defense for three months before being forced to cede to the Soviets 16,000 sq mi (41,440 sq km). Under German pressure, the Finns joined the Nazis against Russia in 1941, but they were defeated again and forced to cede the Petsamo area to the USSR. In 1948, a treaty of friendship and mutual assistance was signed by the two nations. Finland continued to pursue a foreign policy of nonalignment throughout the cold-war era. Running on a platform to revitalize the economy, Martti Ahtisaari, a Social Democrat, won the country's first direct presidential election in a runoff in Feb. 1994. Previously, presidents had been chosen by electors. Finland became a member of the European Union in Jan. 1995. On Jan. 1, 1999, Finland, along with ten other European countries, adopted the euro as its currency. In 2000, Tarja Halonen, who had been Finland's foreign minister, became its first woman president.


Capital and largest city :Helsinki, 1.17 million,National name: Suomen Tasavalta—Republiken Finland Languages: Finnish (official) 89.3%, Swedish (official) 5.3%, other (includes small Sami- and Russian-speaking minorities) 5.4% (2013 est.) Ethnicity/race: Finn 93.4%, Swede 5.6%, Russian 0.5%, Estonian 0.3%, Roma (Gypsy) 0.1%, Sami 0.1% (2006) Religions: Lutheran 78.4%, Orthodox 1.1%, other Christian 1.1%, other 0.2%, none 19.2% (2010 est.) National Holiday: Independence Day, December 6 Literacy rate: 100% (2012 est.) Economic summary: GDP/PPP (2014 est.): $221.5 billion; per capita $40,500. Real growth rate: –.2%. Inflation:1.3%. Unemployment: 8.6%. Arable land: 7.4%. Agriculture: barley, wheat, sugar beets, potatoes; dairy cattle; fish. Labor force: 2.665 million; agriculture and forestry 4.4%, industry 15.5%, construction 7.1%, commerce 21.3%, finance, insurance, and business services 13.3%, transport and communications 9.9%, public services 28.5%. Industries: metals and metal products, electronics, machinery and scientific instruments, shipbuilding, pulp and paper, foodstuffs, chemicals, textiles, clothing. Natural resources: timber, iron ore, copper, lead, zinc, chromite, nickel, gold, silver, limestone. Exports: $78 billion (2014 est.): machinery and equipment, chemicals, metals; timber, paper, pulp (1999). Imports: $72.01 billion (2014 est.): foodstuffs, petroleum and petroleum products, chemicals, transport equipment, iron and steel, machinery, textile yarn and fabrics, grains. Major trading partners: Sweden, Germany, Russia, UK, U.S., Netherlands, Denmark, China (2013). Communications: Telephones: main lines in use: 890,000 (2012); mobile cellular: 9.32 million (2012). Broadcast media: a mix of publicly operated TV stations and privately owned TV stations; the 2 publicly owned TV stations recently expanded services and the largest private TV station has introduced several special-interest pay-TV channels; cable and satellite multi-channel subscription services are available; all TV signals have been broadcast digitally since September 2007; analog broadcasts via cable networks were terminated in February 2008; public broadcasting maintains a network of 13 national and 25 regional radio stations; a large number of private radio broadcasters (2008). Internet hosts: 4.763 million (2012). Internet users: 4.393 million (2009). Transportation: Railways: total: 5,944 km (2013). Highways: total: 78,000 km; paved: 50,000 km (including 700 km of expressways); unpaved: 28,000 km (2012). Waterways: 8,000 km note: includes Saimaa Canal system of 3,577 km; southern part leased from Russia (2013). Major seaports: Helsinki, Kotka, Naantali, Porvoo, Raahe, Rauma. Airports: 148 (2013). International disputes: various groups in Finland advocate restoration of Karelia and other areas ceded to the Soviet Union, but the Finnish Government asserts no territorial demands

राजधानी  हेलसिंकी

फ़िनलैंड, (फ़िनिश: Suomen tasavalta सुओमेन तासावाल्ता या Suomi सुओमी) आधिकारिक तौर पर फ़िनलैंड गणराज्य उत्तरी यूरोप के फेनोस्केनेडियन क्षेत्र में स्थित एक नॉर्डिक देश है। इसकी सीमा पश्चिम में स्वीडन, पूर्व में रूस और उत्तर में नॉर्वे स्थित है, जबकि फिनलैंड खाड़ी के पार दक्षिण में एस्टोनिया स्थित है। देश की राजधानी हेलसिंकी है।लगभग 53 लाख की आबादी वाले इस देश के ज्यादातर लोग दक्षिणी क्षेत्र में रहते हैं। क्षेत्रफल के हिसाब से यह यूरोप का आठवां सबसे बड़ा और जनघनत्व के आधार पर यूरोपीय संघ में सबसे कम आबादी वाला देश हैं। देश में रहने वाले बहुसंख्यक लोगों की मातृभाषा फ़िनिश है, वहीं देश की ५.५ प्रतिशत आबादी की मातृभाषा स्वीडिश है।फिनलैंड ऐतिहासिक रूप से स्वीडन का एक हिस्सा था और १८०९ से रूसी साम्राज्य के अंतर्गत एक स्वायत्त ग्रैंड डची था। रूस से गृहयुद्ध के बाद १९१७ में फ़िनलैंड ने स्वतंत्रता की घोषणा की। फिनलैंड १९५५ मेंसंयुक्त राष्ट्र संघ में, १९६९ में ओईसीडी और १९९५ में यूरोपीय संघ और यूरोजोन में शामिल हुआ। एक सर्वेक्षण में सामाजिक, राजनीतिक, आर्थिक और सैन्य संकेतकों के आधार पर फिनलैंड को दुनिया का दूसरा सबसे अधिक स्थिर देश करार दिया गया है।




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