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China in a Nutshell

China is one of the world’s four ancient civilizations; its history dates back over 5000 years ago in the Huanghe (Yellow) River basin and the middle Yangzi region. Research has proven China’s existence, for example; the neolithic sites of the Yangshao culture along the midsection of the Yellow River confirm the traditional view that the river basin was the cradle of the Chinese civilization. Legends have it that Huangdi (“the Yellow Emperor”) defeated his rival tribes, established the first Chinese kingdom, made himself tienzi, or “The Son of Heaven,” and invented many things for the benefit of his people, including clothing, boats, carts, medicine, the compass, and writing. China is known for its rich culture, philosophy and arts. Over the years we have seen the amazing inventions such as silk, paper, gunpowder etc. coming from China.

As one of the world’s ancient civilization to be known, it has gone through various rulings and governance of the country. China’s history is normally broken down into two eras; the Imperial era and the Modern era. China’s imperial history is one of the recurring rises and fall of dynasties disperse with periods of warring states and, in the last century, of revolution, reform and modernisation. The Modern era began when the British defeated China in the Opium War (1839-1842), forcing China to open its ports to international trade and exposing China in the next 100 years to Western domination. The new Republic of China, under the leadership of Sun, his dictatorial successor Chiang Kaishek, and the Nationalist party.

Modern Day China is known as The Republic People of China:

China, a communist nation in East Asia, is the world’s most populous country with a population estimated at 1,401 billion. Its Capital City is Beijing, with a population 11 million (EST.).

Their official language is Mandarin, a tonal language in the Sino-Tibetan family, however, it is estimated that 53% of the citizens of China speak Standard Mandrin. Some of the other languages spoken are Wu, with 77 million speakers; Min, with 60 million; Cantonese, 56 million speakers; Jin, 45 million speakers; Xiang, 36 million; Hakka, 34 million; Gan, 29 million; Uighur, 7.4 million; Tibetan, 5.3 million; Hui, 3.2 million; and Ping, with 2 million speakers. Amongst these languages, there are other minority languages which are spoken within the country.

Religion has been discouraged under the communist system, but many, 50% of the Chinese follow Buddhism, which overlaps with the 30% Taoist. 14% are Atheists, 4% Christian, 1.5% Muslims and the remaining are Hindu, Bon or Falum Gong adherents.

 

China has had the fastest growing economy for the past 25 years, with the annual growth of more than 10%. Industry and agriculture are the largest sectors which produce more than 60% of China’s GDP and employing over 70% of workers. China exports $1.2 billion U.S. their GDP per capita is $2000, and their poverty rate is 10%. The currency used is yuan Renminbi.

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