Portal:China


China (Chinese: 中国; pinyin: Zhōngguó; lit. 'Central State; Middle Kingdom'), officially the People's Republic of China (Chinese: 中华人民共和国; pinyin: Zhōnghuá Rénmín Gònghéguó; abbr. PRC), is a country in East Asia. It is the world's most populous country, with a population of more than 1.4 billion. China follows a single standard time offset of UTC+08:00 even though it spans five geographical time zones and borders 14 countries, the second most of any country in the world after Russia. Covering an area of approximately 9.6 million square kilometers (3.7 million mi2), it is the world's third or fourth largest country. The country is officially divided into 23 provinces, five autonomous regions, and four direct-controlled municipalities of Beijing (capital city), Tianjin, Shanghai (largest city), and Chongqing, as well as two special administrative regions, Hong Kong and Macau.

China emerged as one of the world's first civilizations in the fertile basin of the Yellow River in the North China Plain. China was one of the world's foremost economic powers for most of the two millennia from the 1st until the 19th century. For millennia, China's political system was based on absolute hereditary monarchies, or dynasties, beginning with the Xia dynasty in 21st century BCE. Since then, China has expanded, fractured, and re-unified numerous times. In the 3rd century BCE, the Qin reunited core China and established the first Chinese empire. The succeeding Han dynasty (206 BCE–220 CE) saw some of the most advanced technology at that time, including papermaking and the compass, along with agricultural and medical improvements. The invention of gunpowder and movable type in the Tang dynasty (618–907) and Northern Song Dynasty (960–1127) completed the Four Great Inventions. Tang culture spread widely in Asia, as the new Silk Route brought traders to as far as Mesopotamia and the Horn of Africa. The Qing Empire, China's last dynasty, which formed the territorial basis for modern China, suffered heavy losses to foreign imperialism. The Chinese monarchy collapsed in 1912 with the 1911 Revolution, when the Republic of China (ROC) replaced the Qing dynasty. China was invaded by the Empire of Japan during World War II. The Chinese Civil War resulted in a division of territory in 1949 when the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) led by Mao Zedong established the People's Republic of China on mainland China while the Kuomintang-led ROC government retreated to the island of Taiwan. Both the PRC and the ROC currently claim to be the sole legitimate government of China, resulting in an ongoing dispute even after the United Nations recognized the PRC as the government to represent China at all UN conferences in 1971. China is currently governed as a unitary one-party socialist republic by the Chinese Communist Party.

China is a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council and a founding member of several multilateral and regional cooperation organizations such as the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, the Silk Road Fund, the New Development Bank, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, and is a member of the BRICS, the G8+5, the G20, the APEC, and the East Asia Summit. It ranks among the lowest in international measurements of civil liberties, government transparency, freedom of the press, freedom of religion and ethnic minorities. Chinese authorities have been criticized by political dissidents and human rights activists for widespread human rights abuses, including political repression, mass censorship, mass surveillance of their citizens and violent suppression of protests.

After economic reforms in 1978, and its entry into the World Trade Organization in 2001, China's economy became the second-largest country by nominal GDP in 2010 and grew to the largest in the world by PPP in 2014. China is the world's fastest-growing major economy, the second-wealthiest nation in the world, and the world's largest manufacturer and exporter. The nation has the world's largest standing army—the People's Liberation Army—the second-largest defense budget, and is a recognized nuclear weapons state. China has been characterized as a potential superpower due to its large economy and powerful military. (Full article...)

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Huizong 1102.jpg

The Jin–Song Wars were a series of conflicts that took place in the 12th and 13th centuries between the Jurchen Jin dynasty and the Han Chinese Song dynasty. The Jin invaded the Song in 1125 and captured the Song capital of Kaifeng in 1127, imprisoning Emperor Qinzong and Huizong (pictured). The Jin conquered northern China and remnants of the Song retreated to southern China, relocating the capital to Hangzhou. A treaty ended the war in 1142 and settled the boundary along the Huai River. Prince Hailing invaded the Song in 1161, but lost at Caishi and was assassinated shortly after. A Song invasion of the Jin motivated by revanchism in 1206–08 and a Jin invasion of the Song in 1217–24 were both unsuccessful. The Song allied with the Mongols in 1233, and jointly captured the last refuge of the Jin emperor in 1234, the year the Jin collapsed. The wars between the Song and Jin gave rise to an era of technological, cultural, and demographic changes in China. The Jin adopted the political and cultural institutions of past Chinese dynasties, gunpowder weapons like the fire lance were introduced, and the Song resettled and rebuilt their government in southern China.

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Flaming wok by KellyB in Bountiful, Utah.jpg

Cantonese or Yue cuisine is the cuisine of the Guangdong province of China, particularly the provincial capital Guangzhou, and the surrounding regions in the Pearl River Delta including Hong Kong and Macau. Strictly speaking, Cantonese cuisine is the cuisine of Guangzhou or of Cantonese speakers, but it often includes the cooking styles of all the speakers of Yue Chinese languages in Guangdong. On the other hand, the Teochew cuisine and Hakka cuisine of Guangdong are considered their own styles, as is neighbouring Guangxi's cuisine despite eastern Guangxi being considered culturally Cantonese due to the presence of ethnic Zhuang influences in the rest of the province. Cantonese cuisine is one of the Eight Culinary Traditions of Chinese cuisine. Its prominence outside China is due to the large number of Cantonese emigrants. Chefs trained in Cantonese cuisine are highly sought after throughout China. Until the late 20th century, most Chinese restaurants in the West served largely Cantonese dishes. (Full article...)

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Pagodas by Lake Shanhu
Credit: Miguel A. Monjas

Pagodas lit up at night near the Lijiang River, in Guangxi Province.

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The Shunzhi Emperor

The Shunzhi Emperor (1638–61) was the third emperor of the Qing dynasty and the first Qing emperor to rule over China, which he did from 1644 to 1661. He was chosen to succeed his father Hong Taiji (1592–1643) by a committee of Manchu princes in September 1643, when he was five years old. Two co-regents were also appointed: Dorgon (1612–50), fourteenth son of Qing founder Nurhaci, and Jirgalang (1599–1655), one of Nurhaci's nephews. Political power lay mostly in the hands of Dorgon. Under his leadership, the Qing conquered most of the territory of the fallen Ming dynasty (1368–1644), chased Ming loyalist regimes deep into the southwestern provinces, and established the basis of Qing rule over China. After Dorgon's death, the young monarch started to rule personally. He tried, with mixed success, to fight corruption and reduce the Manchu nobility's political influence. In the 1650s he faced a resurgence of Ming loyalist resistance, but by 1661 his armies had defeated the Qing's last enemies. He died at the age of 22 of smallpox, against which the Manchus had no immunity. He was succeeded by his third son, Xuanye, who subsequently reigned for sixty years under the name of Kangxi.

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24 September 2021 – Legality of bitcoin by country or territory
The People's Bank of China rules that all financial transactions and activities involving cryptocurrency are illegal in the country. (AFP via NDTV)
24 September 2021 – Arrest of Meng Wanzhou, Detention of Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig, Canada–China relations
Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou reaches a deferred prosecution agreement, pleading not guilty to multiple fraud charges. Meng's extradition case was subsequently dropped and she was released after spending nearly three years under house arrest in Vancouver, Canada, reportedly travelling to Shenzhen, China. (CBC News)
Several hours after Meng Wanzhou was released, Canadians Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig are also released after spending more than 1,000 days in detention in China and will return to Canada. (CBC News)
23 September 2021 – Evergrande Default Crisis
China's largest property developer Evergrande misses the payment deadline of 83.5 million USD in offshore bonds, increasing its chances of a bankruptcy. (Financial Times)
22 September 2021 –
Chinese property giant Evergrande announces that it has agreed on a method of payment for a 4 billion yuan ($620 million) bond denominated in Chinese yuan. Sources for the payment were unclear as it was "settled in negotiations outside the market." (DW) (Regina Leader Post)
21 September 2021 – COVID-19 pandemic
COVID-19 pandemic in mainland China

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China's Politics

Emblem of the Communist Party of China
Xi Jinping

The General Secretary of the Communist Party of China, officially General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, is head of the Communist Party of China and the highest-ranking official within China, a standing member of the Politburo and head of the Secretariat. The officeholder is usually considered the paramount leader of China.

According to the Constitution, the General Secretary serves as an ex officio member of the Politburo Standing Committee, China's de facto top decision-making body. Since the early 1990s, the holder of the post has been, except for transitional periods, the Chairman of the Central Military Commission, making the holder the Commander-in-chief of the People's Liberation Army.

The current General Secretary is Xi Jinping (picture), who took the office at the 18th National Congress on 15 November 2012.

National Emblem of the Republic of China
Tsai Ing-wen

The President of the Republic of China is the head of state of the Republic of China (ROC).

The Constitution names the president as head of state and commander-in-chief of the Republic of China Armed Forces (formerly known as the National Revolutionary Army). The president is responsible for conducting foreign relations, such as concluding treaties, declaring war, and making peace. The president must promulgate all laws and has no right to veto. Other powers of the president include granting amnesty, pardon or clemency, declaring martial law, and conferring honors and decorations.

The current President is Tsai Ing-wen (picture), since May 20, 2016. The first woman to be elected to the office, Tsai is the seventh president of the Republic of China under the 1947 Constitution and the second president from the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).

Wikipedias in languages found in China

粵語 / 广东话 (Cantonese)           古文 / 文言文 (Classical Chinese)           赣语 (Gan)           Hak-kâ-fa (Hakka)           قازاق تىلى (Kazakh)           中文 / 普通话 (Mandarin) (Now unable to access in China Mainland because of the GFW)           闽东语 (Min Dong)           闽南语 (Min-nan)           བོད་ཡིག (Tibetan)           ئۇيغۇرچە (Uyghur)           吴语 (Wu)           Sawcuengh (Zhuang)

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