Pegu (Bago) Division


Pegu (Bago) Division
   One of Burma's 14 states and divisions, with an area of 39,404 square kilometers (15,214 square miles) and an estimated population in 2000 of over five million (1983 census figure: 3,799,791). The divisional capital is Pegu (Bago), one of Burma's historically most important cities, and the division is divided into four districts (Pegu, Prome [Pyay], Tharrawaddy [Thayarwady], and Toungoo [Taungoo]) and 28 townships. Topographically it includes the Pegu (Bago) Yoma, a range of low-lying hills that in the past was heavily forested, as well as fertile lowlands that are formed by alluvium from the Irrawaddy (Ayeyarwady) River and its tributaries. The Irrawaddy is a major artery of transportation and forms most of the division's western border with adjacent Irrawaddy (Ayeyarwady) Division. Centrally located, Pegu Division is also bounded by Arakan (Rakhine) State, Magwe (Magway) Division, Mandalay Division, Mon State, Karen (Kayin) State, and Rangoon (Yangon) Division.
   Pegu Division is Burma's second-largest producer of rice. Forestry is also economically important, along with the production of oil seeds, tobacco, and sugarcane. The delta of the Sittang (Sittaung) River is located in the southern part of the division and empties into the Gulf of Martaban (Mottama), while the Pegu (Bago) River rises in the Pegu Yoma and connects the cities of Pegu and Rangoon (Yangon). Ethnically, the population is made up of Burmans (Bamars), the majority, Mons, Karens (Kayins), Shans, and others. After Burma became independent in 1948, the Pegu Yoma, being difficult to penetrate, became a "liberated area" for the Communist Party of Burma, although the central government had cleared the hills of most communist insurgents by the mid-1970s.

Historical Dictionary of Burma (Myanmar). . 2014.

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