top of page

Tibet At A Glance

The Chinese Government asserts that the Tibetan Autonomous Region represents the entirety of Tibet to the international community.

Tibet is easily recognizable due to its average altitude of 4,000 meters or 13,000 feet above sea level.

The total land size of Tibet spans 2.5 million square kilometers, with the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) encompassing 1.2 million square kilometers. However, it's important to note that the majority of Tibet extends beyond the borders of the TAR.

Tibetan Autonomous Region is with 7 Tibetan Autonomous Territories 

Qinghai Province with 6 Tibetan Autonomous Prefectures

Currently, the Chinese government has divided Tibet into one Autonomous Region, ten Autonomous Prefectures, and two Autonomous Counties.

2 Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture and 1 Tibetan Autonomous County added on Sichuan Province of China

1 Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture is added to Yunnan Province of China

1 Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture and 1 Tibetan Autonomous County are added onto the Gansu Province of China

H.H. The Dalai Lama  
The Great Spiritual Leader of Tibet

Dr. Lobsang Sangay
Past president of the Central Tibetan Administration 
2011 - 2021

Sikyong Penpa Tsering
The Current President of the Central Tibetan Administration
2021 - Current

The term TIBET refers to the whole of Tibet, known as Cholka-Sum (U-Tsang, Kham and Amdo). It includes the present-day Chinese administrative areas of the so-called Tibet Autonomous Region, Qinghai Province, two Tibetan Autonomous Prefectures and one Tibetan Autonomous County in Sichuan Province, one Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture and one Tibetan Autonomous County in Gansu Province and one Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture in Yunnan Province.

Political Status

Occupied country and without United Nations’ representation.


Under Chinese rule, Tibet is divided into the following administrative units: a) Tibet Autonomous Region, b) Qinghai Province, c) Tianzu Tibetan Autonomous County and Gannan Tibetan Autonomous District in Gansu Province, d) Aba Tibetan-Qiang Autonomous District, Ganzi Tibetan Autonomous District and Mili Tibetan Autonomous County in Sichuan Province, e) Dechen Tibetan Autonomous District in Yunnan Province.


The total Tibetan population in Tibet is 6 million. Of them, 2.09 million live in the “TAR” and the rest in the Tibetan areas outside the “TAR”.  

Major Rivers

Yarlung Tsangpo (Brahmaputra in India), Machu (Yellow River in China), Drichu (Yangtse in China), Senge Khabab (Indus in India), Phungchu (Arun in India), Gyalmo Ngulchu (Salween in Burma) and Zachu (Mekong in Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos).

Native Wildlife

Tibetan antelope, wild yak, wild donkey, Tibetan argali, blue sheep, black-necked crane, Tibetan gazelle, giant panda, red panda, golden monkey.


Agriculture and animal husbandry.

Literacy Rate

Approximately 25%.

Population in exile

Approximately 128,014 (Approximate worldwide distribution: India 94,203; Nepal 13,514; Bhutan 1,298 and rest of the world 18,999)

Head of the Central Tibetan Administration

Sikyong, after the devolution of political power by His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama to the elected leader in 2011.

Current Sikyong, Penpa Tsering, Since 2021. Past Sikyong, Lobsang Sangay, 2011 - 2021 

Central Tibetan Administration Departments

Religion and Culture, Home, Security, Education, Finance, Information and International Relations, Health

Autonomous commissions

Election Commission, Public Service Commission and Office of the Auditor General

Election Schedule

Tibetan Parliament in Exile and Sikyong elections are held every five years

Seat of the Central Tibetan Administration

Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh, India.

Offices of Tibet abroad

New Delhi, India; Washington DC, USA; Geneva, Switzerland; Tokyo, Japan; London, UK; Brussels, Belgium; Canberra, Australia; Paris, France; Moscow, Russia; Pretoria, South Africa; Taipei, Taiwan and Sao Paolo, Brazil


Estimated at 82.4% as per the 2009 Demographic Survey of Tibetans in Exile Source: Planning Commision, CTA

Income of the administration

Annual voluntary contribution by exile Tibetans and foreign donations


Agriculture, agro-industrial enterprises, carpet weaving, service sector and seasonal selling of woollen garments


Total school enrolment is 85 to 90 percent of school-going age students

Legal Status


bottom of page