Overview of China

Commonly known around the world as China, the People's Republic of China (PRC) is an incredibly diverse nation – ethnically, geographically, and historically. This East Asian nation has a single-state Communist Government, the Communist Party of China (CPC).

China is the most populous nation in the world. It is estimated that there are more than 1.3 billion people living in China today, according to a 2010 estimate based on a census conducted in 2000 where the population was then over 1.2 billion. Amazingly, despite the billion plus population, it is actually only has the 53rd highest population density on the globe due to its landmass which contains 22 provinces, 2 very autonomous Special Administrative Regions (Macau and Hong Kong), 5 autonomous regions, as well as 4 municipalities which are directly administered (Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, and Chongqing). The capital city of China is Beijing, but the most populous city is actually Shanghai.

China is a history buff's dream. Rivalling the Egyptians as one of the world's earliest civilisations, the Chinese have been around for thousands of years. Today, China is a global economic powerhouse to be reckoned with. Since 1978, economic reforms were introduced based on the market and is the fastest growing major economy in the world. It is also the largest exporter and second largest goods importer. It is also the second largest economy in the world in terms of purchasing power parity and nominal GDP. It is a member of the United Nations Security Council, and has formed many multi-lateral organisations such as the G-20, BRIC, APEC, WTO, and the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation. In addition, it has the world's largest army which is boosted with its large defence budget. It is a potential superpower according to economic analysts, academics, public policy, and military analysts.

Around the world, many people love all forms of Chinese culture which has been brought along by the overseas Chinese diaspora – also known as the Nanyang Chinese. This is prevalent all around the world, from as far north as Canada to as far south as Australia and New Zealand. Most if not all major cities around the world pay tribute to the Chinese influence with Chinatowns popping up all over the globe. As a result, China is a popular tourist destination for people who want to experience history, spirituality, architecture, food, art, and culture. Popular historical tourist landmarks include the Great Wall of China, the Forbidden City, the Summer Palace, the Temple of Heaven, and the Terracotta Warriors in Xi'an.

China has been featured in many mainstream films and TV shows over the years. These include The Karate Kid (2010 version), Kung Fu Panda, and Empire of the Sun. It is also known for its martial arts films, with China having one of world's oldest sporting cultures which span over several millennia. Many of these were featured in 2010 version of the Karate Kid, such as table tennis and kung fu, and tai chi chuan.

China's most popular sports also include swimming, badminton, snooker, and basketball. Chess, Go, and Chinese chess are also commonly played. Tai chi chuan and the ancient practice of qi gong are commonly practised in the mornings. Younger Chinese people are keen on basketball. Many of these idolise their national hero, Yao Ming, who plays in the NBA. This sporting nation also is a force at the Olympic Games, with China constantly performing very well especially during the Summer Olympic Games.