People's Republic of China
Zhongguo Renmin Gongheguo (Chung-hua Jen-min Kung-ho Kuo)
Political Status: Communist People's Republic established October 1, 1949; present constitution adopted December 4, 1982; government controls mainland China and represents China in the United Nations.
Area: 3,692,213 sq. mi. (9,562,842 sq. km.), excluding Taiwan.
Population: 1,242,612,226 (2000C, excluding Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macao); 1,325,029,000 (2007E, excluding Taiwan).
Major Urban Centers (urban areas, 2005E): BEIJING (Peking, 12,100,000), Shanghai (18,150,000), Guangzhou (Canton, 9,550,000), Wuhan (9,100,000), Tianjin (Tientsin, 6,350,000), Shenyang (4,550,000), Nanjing (Nanking, 3,500,000), Harbin (3,400,000), Dalian (Dairen, 2,900,000). Most of these figures are substantially less than previous estimates.
Official Language: Northern (Mandarin) Chinese (putunghua is the officially promoted Beijing dialect).
Monetary Unit: Yuan (official rate November 1, 2008: 6.84 yuan = $1US). The overall currency is known as renminbi (people's currency). China shifted from a ...