Republic of China facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
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 blue circular emblem on which sits a white sun composed of a circle surrounded by 12 rays.
Anthem: "National Anthem of the Republic of China"

“National Flag Anthem”
A map depicting the location of the Republic of China in East Asia and in the World.
red area shows territories controlled by ROC
Capital Taipei
Largest city New Taipei
Official languages Mandarin
Recognised regional languages Taiwanese Hokkien
Hakka Chinese
Formosan languages
Official scripts Traditional Chinese
Ethnic groups
>95% Han Chinese
  70% Hokkien
  14% Hakka
  14% Waishengren
2.3% Aborigines
Demonym(s) Taiwanese or Chinese or both
Government Presidential republic
Tsai Ing-wen
Wang Jin-pyng
• Wuchang Uprising
10 October 1911
• Republic established
1 January 1912
• End of Japanese rule in Taiwan
25 October 1945
• Constitution
25 December 1947
• Government relocated to Taipei
7 December 1949
• Withdrawal from the UN
25 October 1971
• First direct presidential election
23 March 1996
• Total
36,191.4667 km2 (13,973.6034 sq mi) (136th)
• Water (%)
• 2011 estimate
23,174,528 (49th)
• Density
640/km2 (1,657.6/sq mi) (16th)
GDP (PPP) 2011 estimate
• Total
$900,210 billion (19th)
• Per capita
$39,245 (20th)
GDP (nominal) 2011 estimate
• Total
$489.387 billion (24th)
• Per capita
$21,832 (37th)
Gini (2008) 34.1
HDI (2010) Increase 0.868
very high
Currency New Taiwan dollar (NT$) (TWD)
Time zone UTC+8 (CST)
• Summer (DST)
UTC+8 (not observed)
Date format yyyy-mm-dd
(CE; CE+2697) or 民國yy年m月d日
Driving side right
Calling code +886
ISO 3166 code TW
Internet TLD .tw, .台灣, .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. It is usually called Taiwan. The People's Republic of China (PRC) is to the northwest; Japan is to the northeast; the Philippines 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.
  • Taiping (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 governed 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. The Republic of China also used to Mongolia.

Republic of China (orthographic projection, historical)
This is the territory of the Republic of China between 1912 and 1949.

Administrative divisions

Taiwan ROC political divisions labeled.svg

There are administrative divisions in different levels and types.

157 Districts (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 Neighborhoods (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 the dialect of Chinese known as Mandarin, and others speak Taiwanese or Hakka. The Cantonese language, spoken in parts of southern China (for example, the province of Guangdong, and the Special Administrative Region of Hong Kong), is not spoken in Taiwan. A small percentage of Taiwanese speak aboriginal languages, but the rest of the Chinese people have treated them badly, and many of these people, and their languages, struggle to survive. Some older Taiwanese people who went to school while the country was under Japanese rule 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. But, unlike the people in Mainland China, the Taiwanese never changed to simplified Chinese characters and so they have always used traditional Chinese characters. 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.

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