Land and Resources, Natural Resources
Tarai, population pressure, Mineral extraction, Fertile soils, hillsides
Fertile soils are limited to the Tarai and some of the larger valleys of the Middle Himalayas. Some 20.3 percent of the country’s total land area is cultivated—a figure that includes hillsides with thin, poor soils terraced for farming. Due to population pressure, the percentage of Nepal’s cultivated area has increased from only 10 percent in the 1960s.
Nepal’s mineral resources are limited. Low-grade deposits of iron ore are found in the mountains near Kathmandu. Small deposits of copper exist in many areas and small reserves of mica have been found in the hills northeast of Kathmandu. Mineral extraction and transport is a major problem due to the country’s rugged terrain.
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