|Official Name||(People's Republic of China) Zhonghua Renmin GongheGuo||Capital||Beijing||Population||1,285 million||Area||9.56 million sq km or 3.69 million sq mi||Currency||Yuan||Religion||Buddhism, Confucianism and Taoism||Literacy||82%||Languages||Chinese and other local languages||Major Cities||Beijing, Shanghai, Canton, Shenzhen||Climate||Tropical in south; Subarctic in north|
The incredibly rich cultural heritage of China has fascinated the world for centuries. It has been one of the world's oldest civilizations and the home of a proud and colorful people with a history of revolution and internal turmoil. Present China is an amalgamation of the glorious ancient Cathay of legends and the modern unflinching unapologetic superpower of the future.
It is the fourth largest country in the world in terms of land area with Beijing as its capital city. It is divided into 23 sheng or provinces, 5 autonomous zizhiqu or regions and 4 shi or municipalities. The Chinese terrain is mostly mountainous. There are vast deserts like the Gobi in the West while fertile deltas and plains lie mainly in the east. The largest river is the Yangtze Kiang.
Having the largest population in the world, China has several ethnic nationalities - the Han being the largest group followed by Zhuang , Uygur , Mongols , Manchu , Tibetans and others. The official language is Mandarin Chinese , dialects like Cantonese and Hakka are also popular in some regions. Though China is officially atheist, there are Buddhists, Taoists and a small minority of Christians and Muslims.
The Chinese flag denotes its Communist heritage. It is a vibrant red representing the revolution, with a large yellow star on the top left denoting the Communist Common Program and four smaller stars in an arc representing the workers , peasants , the bourgeoisie and the patriotic capitalists . The National Anthem is the 'Yiyonggjun Jinxingqu' or the March of the Volunteers , and was adopted in 1949 when the Communist Government came into power. The song expresses the Chinese people's desire to dedicate themselves to their country and for national liberation. The anthem is more popularly known as 'Zhonghua Renmin Gongheguo Guoge' or the Song of the People's Republic of China .
Modern China has one of the fastest economic growths in the world. With its emphasis on economic and industrial growth, an era of cosmopolitan and liberal communism is coming in. However, the state mechanism still retains tight control over the flow of information, fundamental rights and the movement of people.
Location of China
Located in Eastern Asia, between North Korea and Vietnam, China is bound by the East China Sea, Korea Bay, Yellow Sea, and South China Sea.
Physical Map of China
China has a varied terrain and comprises of vast deserts, towering mountains, high plateaus, and broad plains. In fact, the land is shaped in the form of three steps- first step being the high mountains, plateaus, and great basins in the west which gradually descends to a central band of lower mountains, hills, and plateaus. The second step then further descends onto the last step made up of lowlands, plains, and foothills near the eastern coast. The northwest and north central parts of China has deserts and steppes. The major rivers of China, which includes the three longest ones-the Yangtze, Huang He, and Xi Jiang-flow generally west to east and drain into the Pacific Ocean.
Flag of China
The flag of China is red with a large yellow five-pointed star and four smaller yellow five-pointed stars (arranged in a vertical arc toward the middle of the flag) in the upper hoist-side corner.
Flora And Fauna of China
Owing to wide ranges of climate and topography, China has been bestowed with rich plant species. The tropical dense rain forests in South China consist of broadleaf evergreens, some more than 50 m (160 ft) tall, intermixed with palms. Plants like oak, ginkgo, bamboo, pine, azalea, camellia, laurel, and magnolia are found in subtropical East Central China. These forests usually have dense undergrowth of smaller shrubs and bamboos. The higher elevations are mainly determined by conifers and mountain grasses.
Climate of China
The climate of China is extremely diverse in nature. While the south experiences tropical type of climate, the south is subjected to sub-arctic type of climate.
People of China
Around 92 percent of the population in China is made up of ethnic Han Chinese. They are basically the descendants of people who had settled in the plains and plateaus of northern and central China more than 5,000 years ago, and the people in southern China who were absorbed by the northerners more than 2,000 years ago and who had gradually adopted a shared culture with them. The remaining 8 percent consists of minority nationalities, such as Tibetans and Mongols. Most of the minority nationalities are concentrated in the sparsely settled areas of western and southwestern China.
China takes great pride in their cultural and artistic endeavours, which can be traced back to more than 3,000 years. They consider their unbroken tradition of art as one of the central achievements of Chinese culture, and art of various kinds has always been held in high regard. The main source of achievement has been the country's written language, which has been the tool that has generated these achievements in cultural and artistic spheres. In earliest times, the most important art forms were jade carving and the casting of bronze vessels, often made for burial in royal tombs. The earliest Chinese musical instruments also included bronze bells dating from the Shang and Western Zhou dynasties. Music always played a central role in China and the ability to play and appreciate music was a central aspect of high social status.
Economy of China
China is considered a significant economic power and the economic sector has seen considerable growth in the past few decades. In the 1950s, a majority of economic activity was brought under state control, which then determined production, pricing, and distribution of goods and services. Then in 1979, China began implementing economic reforms to expand and modernize its . These reforms, however, lessened the government's control of the economy, allowing some aspects of a market economy and encouraging foreign investment. Nevertheless, the state-owned sector still remains the backbone of China's economy.
These reforms resulted in the economy growing by 10.2 percent in the 1980s and by 10 percent annually in the period of 1990-2001. This was among the highest growth rates in the world.
In 2001, China's gross domestic product (GDP) was $1,159 billion. Industrial activity (manufacturing, mining, and construction) contributes the largest percentage of the country's GDP, amounting to 51 percent in 2001. Transportation, commerce, and services together accounted for 34 percent. And agriculture, together with forestry and fishing, contributed 15 percent.
Chinese Consulate involves itself in dealing with foreign customers to derive visas from the visiting country on their behalf.
This is a special form of government that was founded in the Napoleonic era when Napoleon the Great crowned himself the Emperor of France.
Headed by the Consul General, the Chinese Consulate is basically his the office or place of work. Representative of the Consulate, he is considered to be the administrator or guardian to be Chinese government, advising it on important issues regarding immigration and other related matters.
Chinese Consulate is responsible for the following functions:
- Maintains records of the Chinese nationals and registers them to get a permanent picture of the total situation whenever required
- The records gathered by the Chinese Consulate help to trace people especially the youngsters, in case they later turn out to be expatriates
- Apart from maintaining public records, Chinese Consulate is also engaged in issuing passports to travelers, verifies proofs of their identities and
- keeps the necessary papers in sequence with the national service of China
- Drawing of certain particular notarized legal agreements and deeds
- Preparing power of attorneys for voting purposes also comes under the jurisdiction of Chinese Consulate
- Chinese Consulate organizes elections in the country
- The inhabitants if China are often represented in the courts of law by the New Consulate in China and if required, is authorized to punish the guilty and defend the innocent
- Chinese Consulate is authorized to help the poor and needy in China and extradite them if required
- New Chinese Consulate exercises its legal and nautical rights whenever and wherever needed
The China Consulates are there in almost every country in Africa except in the countries named Burkina, Chad, Gambia, Ivory Coast, Sao Tome and Principe, Somalia, South Sudan and Swaziland. In Asia, China Consulates are not in Bhutan . In Europe, the countries like Liechtenstein, Monaco, Montenegro, San Marino and Vatican City do not have the Chin Consulates.
In North America , the countries named Belize, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines do not have the Chinese Consulates. Also other countries like Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Palau, Solomon Islands, Tuvalu and Paraguay do not have the Consulates of China.
The military power of China has always attracted attention. In the past few decades China has been improving its military power to the fullest. China's military is one of the biggest in the world. It is true that most of the military assets are physically and technically old. China is on its way to the modernization and improvement of the military forces and equipments. China's most of the military possessions were imported from the Soviet Union.
The People's Liberation Army (PLA) is planned to reduce in personnel's and equipments. The whole idea is to modernize the structure. The ground force comprises of 1.8 million personnels.These forces are further divided into military regions and districts. Further the military regions are dived into Group armies. Each group army has 60,000 soldiers. The group armies comprise of infantry divisions, brigades, and armoured divisions. It also consist of anti aircraft artillery and air bone divisions.
China is home to the world's largest population and maximum population density . The Chinese are a colorful people with thousands of years of history and culture behind them. The Han Chinese is demographically the Ethnic Majority , around 92%. There are 55 national minorities consisting of Zhuang, Uygur, Mongols, Tibetans and others. The Ancient Chinese civilization was one of the most developed in all of history, showing great advance in the arts and sciences.
As a nation, the Chinese are intelligent, pragmatic, generally inward facing and retrospective and also have an inherently creative streak. There have been many scholars, scientists and philosophers among the ancient Chinese. Confucius is one of the most famous philosophers of all ages. Chinese History also talks about various political intrigues and military expeditions. In today's international politic speak; the term Mandarin usually indicates a high-ranking government official. Famous Chinese text, The Art of War is still considered a major martial text. Chinese migrants are spread out all over the world, known for their entrepreneurship and industriousness. Most major cities of the world have a respectable Chinese presence.
In Chinese naming conventions , the family name is taken first. Modern Chinese follow the generic convention where the last name is the family name.
Famous Chinese down the Ages:
- Confucius - Famous Chinese thinker and philosopher, his way of thought has deeply influenced Chinese philosophy.
- Fa Hien - Famous Chinese Monk who traveled extensively in India.
- Mao Zedong - One of the greatest political thinkers of all ages led the Communist victory against the Kuomintang and was the first premier of the People's Republic of China.
- Chiang Kai-shek - Chinese military and political leader and one of the architects of modern China.
- Sun Yat-sen - Chinese revolutionary and the father of modern China.
- Deng Xiaoping - De Facto leader of the PRC till the 1990s, Xiaoping led China through a period of extensive economic and political reform.
- Gao Xinjiang - Nobel Laureate, dramatist and novelist, Xinjiang is a Chinese emigrant to France. He is also known as one of the pioneering Absurd Dramatists.
- Bruce Lee - The master of martial arts who brought Kung Fu and Karate to Hollywood and the world.