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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.

Languages & Population

Approximate Population: 1,321,851,888 (July 2007 est.)

Nationality (Noun): Chinese (singular and plural)

Nationality (Adjective): Chinese

Official Language(s): Chinese

Major Languages Spoken: Chinese, Hmong, Kirghiz, Korean, Mongolian, Uzbek, Mandarin, Cantonese

Map of China

Country Facts

Country Name (long form): People's Republic of China

Country Name (short form): China

Country Name (local long form): Zhonghua Renmin Gongheguo

Country Name (local short form): Zhongguo

Name of Capital: Beijing

UTC Time Difference (from capital): UTC+8 (13 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

Countries Near by, and Bordering China: Burma, Taiwan, Tajikistan, Vietnam, Kazakhstan, Korea (North), Kyrgyzstan, Macau, Mongolia, Nepal, Pakistan, Russia, Laos, Afghanistan, Bhutan, Hong Kong, India

Land Area: 9326410 sq km

Water Area: 270550 sq km

Comparative Area: slightly smaller than the US

Total Land Boundry: 22,117 km

Coastline: 14,500 km

National Holiday: Anniversary of the Founding of the People's Republic of China, 1 October (1949)

International Phone Code: 86

Currency Code: yuan (CNY)

Internet Country Code: .cn

US Embassy Location: Xiu Shui Bei Jie 3, 100600 Beijing

US Embassy Mailing Address: PSC 461, Box 50, FPO AP 96521-0002


China flag

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