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World > Asia > China

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   China

Introduction:
For centuries China stood as a leading civilization, outpacing the rest of the world in the arts and sciences, but in the 19th and early 20th centuries, the country was beset by civil unrest, major famines, military defeats, and foreign occupation. After World War II, the Communists under MAO Zedong established an autocratic socialist system that, while ensuring China's sovereignty, imposed strict controls over everyday life and cost the lives of tens of millions of people. After 1978, his successor DENG Xiaoping and other leaders focused on market-oriented economic development and by 2000 output had quadrupled. For much of the population, living standards have improved dramatically and the room for personal choice has expanded, yet political controls remain tight.


Official name: People's Republic of China
Capital: name: Beijing
geographic coordinates: 39 55 N, 116 23 E
time difference: UTC+8 (13 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
note: despite its size, all of China falls within one time zone
Government type: Communist state
Population: 1,321,851,888 (July 2007 est.)
Languages: Standard Chinese or Mandarin (Putonghua, based on the Beijing dialect), Yue (Cantonese), Wu (Shanghainese), Minbei (Fuzhou), Minnan (Hokkien-Taiwanese), Xiang, Gan, Hakka dialects, minority languages (see Ethnic groups entry)
Official Currency: Chinese Yuan Renminbi (CNY)

Current Chinese Yuan Renminbi Exchange Rates
Historical Chinese Yuan Renminbi Exchange Rates
Chart Chinese Yuan Renminbi Exchange Rates
Currency code: CNY
Area: total: 9,596,960 sq km
land: 9,326,410 sq km
water: 270,550 sq km
Climate: extremely diverse; tropical in south to subarctic in north


Map of China
map of China


Facts at a Glance: Geography - People - Government - Economy - Communications - Transportation - Military - Climate - Current Time - Ranking Positions - Chinese Yuan Renminbi Exchange Rates
Notes and Commentary: People - Economy - Government and Political Conditions - Historical Highlights - Foreign Relations - Relations with U.S.



Facts at a Glance
Geography
People
Government
Economy
Communications
Transportation
Military
Climate
Current Time
Ranking Positions
Chinese Yuan Renminbi Exchange Rates


Notes and Commentary
People
Economy
Government and Political Conditions
Historical Highlights
Foreign Relations
Relations with U.S.





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