Republic of China
Flag National Emblem of the Republic of China.svg
CHN orthographic.svg
Largest City Shanghai
Official languages Standard Chinese
Demonym Chinese
Government Unitary semi-presidential constitutional republic
 -  President Xi Jinping
 -  Premier Li Keqiang
Legislature Legislative Yuan
 -  Unification of China under the Qin Dynasty 221 BCE 
 -  Republic established 1 January 1912 
 -  Current constitution 25 December 1947 
Currency Yuan (¥)
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 -  Summer (DST) China Standard Time (UTC+8)
Drives on the right
Internet TLD .cn
Calling code +86


Chiang Kai-shek 1947

Chiang Kai-shek's inauguration speech as the first President of the Republic of China in the new constitution of 1948

Major combat in the Chinese Civil War ended in 1949 with the Kuomintang in control of most of mainland China, and the Communist Party retreating offshore, controlling Taiwan, Hainan, and their surrounding islands. On May 20, 1948 Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek became the first post-war President. In 1950, the Republic of China Armed Forces succeeded in capturing Hainan from the dissidents with Chiang Kai-shek's new regime and occupying Tibet. However, remaining anti-government forces continued to wage an insurgency in western China throughout the 1950s.

Chiang encouraged population growth, and under his leadership the Chinese population almost doubled from around 550 million to over 900 million. However, Chiang's various large-scale economic and social reform projects, resulted in an estimated 45 million deaths between 1958 and 1961, mostly from starvation. In 1966, Chiang and his allies launched the Cultural Revolution, sparking a period of political recrimination and social upheaval which lasted until Chiang's death in 1975.

After Chiang's death in 1975 and the brief presidency of Yen Chia-kan, who immediately succeeded Chiang, his son Chiang Ching-kuo took power and led the country to significant economic reforms. The Kuomintang subsequently loosened governmental control over citizens' personal lives. This turn of events marked China's transition from a planned economy to a mixed economy with an increasingly open market environment. China began amending its constitution in the 1980's. In 1989, the violent suppression of student protests in Tiananmen Square brought condemnation and sanctions against the Chinese government from various countries.

File:Flickr - Shinrya - Shanghai Skyline HDR.jpg

Jiang Zemin, Li Peng and Zhu Rongji led the nation in the 1990s. Under their administration, China's economic performance pulled an estimated 150 million peasants out of poverty and sustained an average annual gross domestic product growth rate of 11.2%. The country formally joined the World Trade Organization in 2001, and maintained its high rate of economic growth under Hu Jintao and Wen Jiabao's leadership in the 2000s. However, rapid growth also severely impacted the country's resources and environment, and caused major social displacement. Living standards continued to improve rapidly despite the late-2000s recession, but centralized political control remained tight.

Preparations for a decadal Kuomintang leadership change in 2012 were marked by factional disputes and political scandals. In November 2012, Hu Jintao was replaced as Chairman of the Kuomintang by Xi Jinping. Under Xi, the Chinese government began large-scale efforts to reform its economy, which has suffered from structural instabilities and slowing growth. The Xi-Li Administration also announced major reforms to the one-child policy and prison system.


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