United Kingdom

Great Britain - an island on which the England, Scotland and Wales, constitutes, together with many smaller islands, an archipelago of irregular shape with a very diverse landscape and nature. The latter is a consequence of the fact that the British Isles were once part of Europe, but were cut off from the mainland after the flooding of low lying land, now is the bottom of the North Sea and English Channel. Northern Ireland, which is politically complements the United Kingdom, located on the second-largest island, Ireland, and is the western extension of the Scottish mountains. These mountain areas are separated by a narrow North Channel.

Historically, the geographical features of the British influence on human settlement, migration, armed conquest and political union. They also identified the location and operation of industry, transportation systems, agriculture, fisheries, forests, energy and communications. Today they continue to define the lives of British people, and besides, they are closely related to the concern of society for the environment and wildlife.

Geographical position of Britain marked the zero meridian, which passes through the international time zone at Greenwich to the east of London, 50 º N latitude in the south-east England and 60 º north latitude in the Shetland Islands. Thus, the United Kingdom is only 10 º of latitude, which makes it a very small country compared to some European countries. However, even on such a tiny territory it has retained a huge variety of landscapes and contrasting physical traits that affect tourists waiting to see an overcrowded and industrialized countries.
UK (United Kingdom) - an island nation, most of whose territory is situated on two major islands, separated by the waters of the Irish Sea. The total area of the UK is 244,017 square meters. km. UK population - 58 395 000 people.
Officially the country is called United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. It consists of four countries: England, Scotland and Wales, located on the island of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The latter is located on an island with the Independent Republic of Ireland. Thus, a common land border with the United Kingdom has only Ireland.

The British Isles lie off the north-west coast of Europe. The British Isles are surrounded by numerous smaller islands. In the south-west of the island of Great Britain are islands of Scilly, and the North of Wales - the island of Anglesey. On the western and northern coasts of Scotland, there are numerous small islands that are part of the UK. The most important of these are Orkney Shetland Islands.
From west Britain by the Atlantic Ocean and the east - the waters of the North Sea.
From the south, bordering with France, Great Britain - the closest and most developed neighbors with her common water border. The shortest distance to the north coast of France - the Strait of Dover, but the main message among nations through the English Channel, called the British "English Channel, along the bottom which in the late twentieth century has been traced in the tunnel for high-speed rail service. Prior to this communication between the two countries carried out by water or by air.

Also, the closest neighbors are the UK, Belgium and the Netherlands, much more are Denmark, Germany, Norway.

Thus, EGP Britain is both a neighbor and the seaside, which is extremely beneficial for the country's economic development, although, of course, has certain disadvantages in strategic and military terms.

Administrative map of Britain changed repeatedly since accession countries that comprise the United Kingdom, lasted for centuries. Every once-independent state has its own capital or administrative center. The official capital of the UK is London, because land consolidation going on around England.

In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, Great Britain, being in first place in the world in terms of economic development, has created huge colonial power, took up almost a quarter of the planet. Go to the British colonies include India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and much of Africa. Twentieth-century British colonies became independent states, but many of them are part of the British Commonwealth, led by the British monarch. In 1921, the southern part of Ireland separated from Britain and became an independent state.
Modern administrative division of the UK

Territory Capital

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Northern Ireland




Form of government of Great Britain - a constitutional monarchy. The monarchy is the oldest of all existing forms of government. And in Britain the continuity of royal power was broken only once in ten centuries of existence of the state. The current Queen Elizabeth II comes from the kind of the Saxon King Egbert who united England in 892, and Malcolm II, who ruled Scotland from 1005 to 1034 years.

Monarch of Great Britain is the main face of the state. Legally, the monarch directs the executive branch is supreme commander of the British Army. But actually, as a result of changes taking place over many centuries, monarchs lost their absolute power. The Queen ruled the state with the consent of the Cabinet, ie "Reigns, not the rule."

Legislature is a bicameral parliament consisting of the Upper House - the House of Lords and the Lower House - the House of Commons. Meetings are held in the Parliament building, which is one of the attractions of London. 650 members of the House of Commons elected by the citizens of the UK once every five years, while membership in the House of Lords handed down in families of hereditary nobles.

Thus, the Queen represents the state in the international arena and is a symbol of power. The executive power is vested in the cabinet, shaped by a parliamentary majority.

Among the variety of political parties, the UK's leading role is played by the two major parties. This - the Conservatives (Tories) and Labor (the Whigs).
UK population is over 58 million people. Ethnic composition: English - more than 80% of Scots - 10%, Welsh (indigenous people of Wales) - 2% Irish - 2.5%.
Much of the population profess Protestantism. The exception is Northern Ireland, where most residents are Catholic. Northern Ireland is a place of permanent conflicts on religious and ethnic grounds.

Since 1921, about 40% of the population live in seven major metropolitan areas with centers in London (Greater London) Manchester (Southeast Lankshir), Birmingham and Volverhemptone (West Midland), Glasgow (Central Clydeside), Leeds and Bradford (West Yorkshire ), Liverpool (Merseyside) and Nyukase-upon-Tyne (Tyneside). The level of urbanization in the UK is 91%. Percentage of rural population is very small.

In recent years there has been a noticeable influx of people from developing countries, mostly from Africa, Asia and Latin America.
The UK is one of four countries that define economic power in Europe. UK industry involves many sectors, some of which have global significance. Midland - this is the main industrial area of the UK.

Metallurgy in the UK is one of the most developed industries. It employs more than 582 thousand people. And first place in the number of employment belongs to the steel industry (332 thousand). The remainder being non-ferrous metals. The main centers of production of steel and iron are Cardiff and Swansea (Wales), Leeds (England). Annual steel production - more than 15 million tons. Aluminum plants located mainly in Scotland and Wales.
Consumers of steel products are mainly engineering plants.
Mechanical engineering is one of the leading industries of the UK. It includes a set of directions, each of which is characterized by its location. Since knowledge-based engineering (aircraft industry, electronics) are located mainly around London. Machine tool industry is concentrated in an area of Birmingham. Shipbuilding - specialty area of Glasgow, and textile machinery developed mainly in the Manchester area.

The main sources of energy are coal and oil, to a lesser extent - natural gas. The coal mining industry is one of the oldest industries of Great Britain. At the beginning of the century British coal dominated the world market, now in the UK produces each year more than 80 million tons of coal. Major mining regions - Cardiff, South Wales and Central England (Sheffield). Oil extracted offshore North Sea off the east coast of England and Scotland. Annual production amounts to more than 94 million tons. The main oil refinery located in Southampton, Cheshire, Yorkshire. Earnings from oil exports reached 150 million pounds. Gas production is 55 billion cubic meters. m. per year and growing annually. Electric power is based on thermal and hydro. Numerous HPP are located in mountainous areas of Scotland and Wales and the CHP - in coal mining areas. The share of nuclear power is low, although in recent years have seen an increase in their construction.

The chemical industry is concentrated mainly in Birmingham and Middlesbrough. This is mainly the production of plastics, detergents and disinfectants, dyes, fertilizers. Britain is one of the largest exporters of dyes in the world. High level of development reached the pharmaceutical industry. Every year the demand for drugs manufactured in the UK

Light industry is one of the oldest types of production in the UK. In this area, employing about 690,000 people, with more than half of them - were women. The main areas of development of light industry are the Lancashire, Yorkshire, Liverpool, Manchester. On the island of Lewis is concentrated production of woolen textiles, mainly the world famous "plaid." For the production of woolen fabrics Britain is among the world leaders. Production of knitwear is developed mainly in Scotland and the Midlands. Production of linen fabric is concentrated mainly in Northern Ireland. Britain has long specialized in the leather industry and is a world exporter of leather products. Factories engaged in leather industry, are located everywhere, but much of it concentrated in Lancashire, Yorkshire, Midlands, near London. UK ranks third in the pop world footwear production. Sold annually over 200 million pairs of shoes. UK clothing industry is the largest in Europe. The UK is the largest exporter of clothing. The main centers of the garment industry are London, Leeds and Manchester.