East Malaysia

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East Malaysia, also known as Malaysian Borneo[1] or simply Sabah and Sarawak.[2], is the part of Malaysia located on the island of Borneo. It consists of the Malaysian states of Sabah and Sarawak,[3] as and the Federal Territory of Labuan.[4] It lies to the east from Peninsular Malaysia (West Malaysia),[5] which is located on the Malay Peninsula. The two are separated by the South China Sea.[6] While East Malaysia is less populated and less developed than West Malaysia, its land mass is larger and it has notably more natural resources, chiefly oil and gas reserves.


Physical geography

The landscape of East Malaysia is mostly lowland rain forests with areas of mountain rain forest towards the interior regions.

The total area of East Malaysia is 200,565 km2, representing approximately 61% of the total land area of Malaysia and 27% of the total area of Borneo.

East Malaysia contains the five highest mountains in Malaysia – the highest being Mount Kinabalu at 4,095 m, which is also the highest mountain in Borneo and the 10th highest mountain peak in Southeast Asia. It also contains the two longest rivers in Malaysia - Rajang River and Kinabatangan River.[7]

Banggi Island in Sabah and Betruit Island in Sarawak are the two largest fully governed island in Malaysia.[7] The largest island is Borneo, which is shared with Indonesia and Brunei.[8] The second largest island is Sebatik Island, in Sabah, which is shared with Indonesia.[9][10]

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