It is a part of the region of Upper Burma. Shan is located in the east of the country, on the border with China, Laos, Thailand. The largest region in Myanmar (about 25% of its territory).
The titular group - Shan people - make up about 75% of the state's population. Like the Burmese, they profess Buddhism. However, Shan people speak Thai. Apart from Shan people, there are numerous ethnic minorities on the territory of the state, some of which have subregional autonomy.
Even in the Middle Ages, Shan people had kingdoms, which in some periods were dependent on Burma. During the creation of an independent Burma, Burmese leader, General Aung San, managed to reach an agreement with some mountain peoples, including Kachin. As a result of the decisions of the Panglong Conference, an autonomous state of Shan was created in 1947.
During the period of military governments in Myanmar, the balance was violated, and for many decades the armed conflict between various rebel groups, including the Shan State Army, and the central government continued. In addition, the state has strong ethno-regional parties, in the aggregate they receive about half the seats in the regional parliament. In recent decades, in the context of the democratization, attempts to restore balance in relations among ethnic groups have intensified. In 2016, with the aim of resolving the contradictions, the "The Union Peace Conference - 21st Century Panglong" began its work.