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Republic of China

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See also: Taiwan
Republic of China

Chunghwa Minkuo
Zhōnghuá Mínguó
A red flag, with a small blue rectangle in the top left hand corner on which sits a white sun composed of a circle surrounded by 12 rays.
A map depicting the location of the Republic of China in East Asia and in the World.
red area shows territories controlled by ROC
Official languagesMandarin[2]
Traditional Chinese
Ethnic groups
98% Han[3][4]

 70% Hoklo
 14% Hakka
 14% Mainlanders[5]

2% Taiwanese aborigines[6]
Demonym(s)Taiwanese[7][8][9] or Chinese[10] or both
GovernmentPresidential republic
• President
Ma Ying-jeou
Wu Den-yih
• Premier
Jiang Yi-huah
Wang Jin-pyng
10 October 1911
• Republic established
1 January 1912
25 October 1945
25 December 1947
7 December 1949
25 October 1971
23 March 1996
• Total
36,191.4667 km2 (13,973.6034 sq mi) (136th)
• Water (%)
• 2011 estimate
23,174,528[11][c] (49th)
• Density
640/km2 (1,657.6/sq mi) (16th)
GDP (PPP)2011 estimate
• Total
$900,210 billion[12] (19th)
• Per capita
$39,245[12] (20th)
GDP (nominal)2011 estimate
• Total
$489.387 billion[12] (24th)
• Per capita
$21,832[12] (37th)
Gini (2008)34.1[13]
HDI (2010)Increase 0.868[14][15]
very high
CurrencyNew Taiwan dollar (NT$) (TWD)
Time zoneUTC+8 (CST)
• Summer (DST)
UTC+8 (not observed)
Date formatyyyy-mm-dd
(CE; CE+2697) or 民國yy年m月d日
Driving sideright
Calling code+886
ISO 3166 codeTW
Internet, .台灣,[16] .台湾
a. ^  See also Names of China.

b. ^  Nanking (now Nanjing) was the seat of the government from 1928 until 1949 except during wars, when the government retreated to Taipei.

c. ^  Population and density ranks based on 2008 figures.

The Republic of China (simplified Chinese: 中华民国; traditional Chinese: 中華民國; pinyin: Zhonghua Minguo), also known as Republic of China (Taiwan), is a democratic island country in East Asia that is known around the world by most people as Taiwan. The People's Republic of China People's Republic of China (PRC) is to the northwest; JapanJapan is to the northeast; the PhilippinesPhilippines is to the south.


The territory the Republic of China (ROC) controls is known by most people as the island of Taiwan. Most places on Taiwan Island are called "Taiwan Province" by the government of the Republic of China for official business, except the two largest cities of Taipei and Kaohsiung. West of Taiwan Island, there are three small groups of islands that also belong to ROC. They are:

  • The Pescadores (Penghu, 澎湖列島): They also are part of Taiwan Province.
  • Quemoy (Kinmen, 金門): A part of Fujian province, called Kinmen County(金門縣).
  • Matsu (馬祖列島): the smallest county, called Lienchiang County(連江縣), also part of Fujian province
  • Diaoyutai Islands:The Diaoyutai Islands (釣魚臺列嶼|Diàoyútái Lièyû) are a group of islands where nobody lives that the Republic of China (ROC) claims it belong to them, but also claimed by the People's Republic of China (PRC) and Japan. In Japanese, the islands are known as the Senkaku Islands (尖閣諸島, Senkaku Shotō?). The islands are now under the control of Japan.
  • Dong-Sha Islands:The Pratas Islands or Dong-Sha Islands (東沙羣島) consists of three islands in the northeastern South China Sea, 340 km southeast of Hong Kong.
  • TaipingTaiping (Traditional Chinese: 太平島|Tàipíng), also known as Itu Aba, is the largest of the Nansha Islands (Spratly Islands) in the South China Sea.

The ROC used to govern Mainland China too. Now it is owned by the Communist People's Republic of China see History and Political problems of China. However, ROC still declares Mainland China as its territory officially.

Administrative divisions

Taiwan ROC political divisions labeled.svg

There are administrative divisions in different levels and types.

157 Disticts (區 qū), 17 Country-controlled cities (縣轄市 xiànxiáshì), 41 Urban Townships (鎮 zhèn), and 153 Rural Townships (鄉 xiāng) stand the 3rd level. Districts stand under either Special municipalities or Provincial cities; Country-controlled cities, Urban Townships, and Rural Townships stand under Counties.

Villages (里 lǐ or 村 cūn) stand the 4th level, and Neiborhoods (鄰 lín) stand the 5th level.


The Nationalists, led by Dr. Sun Yat-sen, got rid of the Qing Dynasty ruled by the Manchus, then they established the ROC and ended Imperial Dynastic Rule in late-1911. The ROC at that time had Mainland China and all of what is now called Mongolia.

After the Japanese were defeated by the Allies during World War II, Taiwan was controlled by the ROC.

In 1949, the Chinese Communists fought a war against the Nationalists and won. They established the People's Republic of China. The Nationalists left mainland China and arrived in Taiwan.


After the ROC created a base on Taiwan, it hoped one day to capture the Mainland. But Chinese Communists grew stronger, so the Nationalists never did go back. The Communists say they replaced the ROC as the only government of China and also calls Taiwan their own.

There are those people in Taiwan who want to never be a part of the People's Republic of China. They believe in complete Taiwan independence and want to rename the ROC (Taiwan) to "Republic of Taiwan" so Taiwan can no longer have any ancestral connection to China or Chinese culture. Some other people wish to unite with the People's Republic of China; they want Chinese reunification. Some still want to attack the PRC and reunify China under the Republic of China. Some others want the status quo, which means keeping everything the way it is now.


Most Taiwanese people speak Mandarin, and others speak Taiwanese or Hakka. A small percentage of them are aboriginal, and these people have their own languages, although unfair treatment exerted by the Chinese people have been bad, and many of these people, and their languages, struggle to survive. Some older Taiwanese people who went to school before 1947 can speak Japanese. After the Nationalist government fled the Mainland in 1948-49, they brought their language, Mandarin with them, and made Mandarin the only official language. Then everyone in the ROC had to learn Mandarin. In the past, students were not allowed to speak their mother tongue in school and were expected to speak only Mandarin. Taiwanese, Hakka, and native languages were considered bad until the early 1990s, when education in these languages began to be taught in some school systems. They were promoted, but by this time, many young people could speak only Mandarin. The Cantonese language, spoken in parts of southern China (for example, the province of Guang Dong, and the Special Administrative Region of Hong Kong), is not spoken in Taiwan.


  1. "Yearbook 2004". Government Information Office of the Republic of China. 2004. "Taipei is the capital of the ROC"
  2. "Taiwan (self-governing island, Asia)". Britannica Online Encyclopedia. 1975-04-05. Retrieved 2009-05-07.
  3. 3.0 3.1 "The Republic of China Yearbook 2009. Chapter 2 – People and Language". Government Information Office. 2009. Archived from the original on 3 August 2010. Retrieved 2 May 2010.
  4. CIA World Factbook information about Taiwan
  5. Waishengren usually refers to people who moved from mainland China to Taiwan after 1949 when the KMT retreated to Taiwan due to the Chinese Civil War, and to their descendants born in Taiwan. It usually does not include citizens of the People's Republic of China who more recently moved to Taiwan.
  6. Taiwanese Aborigines are officially categorised into 14 separate ethnic groups by the Republic of China. They have all been grouped into one group here for simplicity. For the entire list of groups, see List of ethnic groups in Taiwan
  7. "The ROC's Humanitarian Relief Program for Afghan Refugees". 2001-12-11. Archived from the original on December 15, 2004. Retrieved 2009-05-07.
  8. "Taiwanese health official invited to observe bird-flu conference". 2005-11-11. Retrieved 2009-05-07.
  9. "Demonyms – Names of Nationalities". Retrieved 2009-05-07.
  10. Although the territories controlled by the ROC imply that the demonym is "Taiwanese", some consider that it is "Chinese" due to the claims of the ROC over all of China. Taiwanese people have various opinions regarding their own national identity.
  11. "MOI Statistical Information Service". Retrieved 2011-06-22.
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 "Republic of China (Taiwan)". International Monetary Fund. Retrieved 2011-09-20.
  13. Regularly check CIA factbook or Household Income distribution of major countries.
  14. Due to its political status, the UN has not calculated an HDI for the ROC. The ROC government calculated its HDI for 2010 to be 0.868, and would rank 18th among countries.
  16. "ICANN Board Meeting Minutes". ICANN. 25 June 2010.