The Bridge Fund

The Region

The Tibetan plateau, including the Tibetan Autonomous Region (TAR). Click the image for a larger version of the map.

Covering 2.5 million square kilometers, the Tibetan Plateau, comprised of the Tibetan Autonomous Region (T.A.R.) and the Tibetan Autonomous Prefectures of Gansu, Sichuan, Qinghai and Yunnan, is comparable in size to Western Europe and makes up one quarter of the total area of China. The Tibetan population, estimated between 5.5 and 6 million, is overwhelmingly rural. Its harsh climate, geographic isolation, high altitude, vast and rugged mountain terrain and lack of infrastructure make the Tibetan plateau one of the poorest and most underdeveloped regions of China.

Many Tibetan communities lack the resources to fully participate in and benefit from the reforms that are driving economic growth in other parts of China. A significant percentage of rural based Tibetans lack adequate access to education, healthcare, and resources for improving their economic livelihoods. Nomadic and semi-nomadic populations, as well as those with locally based subsistence economies, are most vulnerable to rapid economic and social changes. Education, healthcare, and resources for improving their economic livelihoods. Nomadic and semi-nomadic populations, as well as those with locally based subsistence economies, are most vulnerable to rapid economic and social changes.

 

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