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China is a populous nation in East Asia whose vast landscape encompasses grassland, desert, mountains, lakes, rivers and more than 14,000km of coastline. Capital Beijing mixes modern architecture with historic sites such as the Forbidden City palace complex and Tiananmen Square. Shanghai is a skyscraper-studded global financial center. The iconic Great Wall of China runs east-west across the country's north.

China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia and the world's most populous country, with a population of around 1.404 billion. Covering approximately 9,600,000 square kilometers (3,700,000 sq mi), it is the third- or fourth-largest country by total area, depending on the source consulted. Governed by the Communist Party of China, the state exercises jurisdiction over 22 provinces, five autonomous regions, four direct-controlled municipalities (Beijing, Tianjin, Shanghai, and Chongqing), and the special administrative regions of Hong Kong and Macau.

The “yuan” is the base unit of a number of former and present-day currencies in Chinese.

The languages of China are the languages that are spoken in China. The predominant language in China, which is divided into seven major language groups (classified as dialects by the Chinese government for political reasons), is known as Hanyu (simplified Chinese; traditional Chinese; pinyin: Hànyǔ) and its study is considered a distinct academic discipline in China. Hanyu, or Han language, spans eight primary varieties that differ from each other morphologically and phonetically to such a degree that they will often be mutually unintelligible, similarly to English and German or Danish. The languages most studied and supported by the state include Chinese, Mongolian, Tibetan, Uyghur and Zhuang. China has 299 living languages listed at Ethnologue. According to the 2010 edition of the National encyklopedin, 955 million out of China's then-population of 1.34 billion spoke some variety of Mandarin Chinese as their first language, accounting for 71% of the country's population.

Standard Chinese (known in China as Putonghua), a form of Mandarin Chinese, is the official national spoken language for the mainland and serves as a lingua franca within the Mandarin-speaking regions (and, to a lesser extent, across the other regions of mainland China). Several other autonomous regions have additional official languages. For example, Tibetan has official status within the Tibet Autonomous Region, and Mongolian has official status within Inner Mongolia. Language laws of China do not apply to either Hong Kong or Macau, which have different official languages (Cantonese, English and Portuguese) than the mainland.

The politics of the People's Republic of China takes place in a framework of a socialist republic run by a single party, the Communist Party of China, headed by General Secretary. State power within the People's Republic of China (PRC) is exercised through the Communist Party, the Central People's Government (State Council) and their provincial and local representation. The Communist Party of China uses Internal Reference (zh) to manage and monitor internal disagreements among the citizens of People's Republic of China. Document Number Nine was circulated among the Chinese Communist Party in 2013 by Xi–Li Administration to tighten control of the ideological sphere in China to ensure the supreme leadership of the Communist Party will not be challenged by Western influences. The PRC controls mainland China, Hainan Island, Hong Kong, Macau and some South China Sea islands.

The primary organs of state power are the National People's Congress (NPC), the President, and the State Council. Members of the State Council include the Premier, a variable number of Vice Premiers (now four), five State Councilors (protocol equal of vice premiers but with narrower portfolios), and 29 ministers and heads of State Council commissions. During the 1980s there was an attempt made to separate party and state functions, with the party deciding general policy and the state carrying it out. The attempt was abandoned in the 1990s with the result that the political leadership within the state is also the leaders of the party. This dual structure thereby creates a single centralized focus of power.

The President of the People's Republic of China is the head of state of the People's Republic of China. Under the country's constitution, the presidency is a largely ceremonial office with limited powers. However, since 1993, as a matter of convention, the presidency has been held simultaneously by the General Secretary of the Communist Party of China, the top leader in the one party system. The office is officially regarded as an institution of the state rather than an administrative post; theoretically, the President serves at the pleasure of the National People's Congress, the legislature, and is not legally vested to take executive action on its own prerogative. The current President is Xi Jinping, who took office in March 2013.

Safety in China, is on a pretty good level according to independent sources. People compare the safety conditions with other developed states, and the general opinion is that in most factors China is relatively safe to visit live in. Keeping out of trouble with the local population and the local authorities and law enforcement is pretty much “a matter of common sense”. However be wary, and don’t get too “ahead of yourself” too much, as China is one of the countries in the world that still enforces immediate death sentence, under some circumstances of political or public pressure, or in the cases directly required by law. The cases may vary, however most are against organized crime, economical corruption and different types of smuggling, different types of violence and manslaughter.
Anyways, it is very unlikely for a regular tourist or a business visitor to receive the
harshest of sentences for something that is considered lawful and normal in other parts of the civilized world. After some judicial reforms in 2005-2006, the number of capital offences, or the types of crimes punished by death, was reduced by around 10%. A number of instances in court, reviews, and possibilities to appeal were introduced, to avoid wrongful convictions, and answer the calls of human rights organizations, such as Amnesty International. The bottom line is, the main point of thepunitive philosophy is kept and the People’s Republic of China still practices the capital punishment.

The Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) is the armed forces of the People's Republic of China (PRC) and Communist Party of China (CPC). The PLA consists of five professional service branches: the Ground Force, Navy, Air Force, Rocket Force, and the Strategic Support Force. Units around the country are assigned to one of five Theater commands by geographical location. The PLA is the world's largest military force and constitutes the second largest defence budget in the world. It is one of the fastest modernizing military power in the world and has been termed as a potential military superpower, with significant regional defense and rising global power projection capabilities. It is also the third largest arms exporter in the world.

The PLA is under the command of the Central Military Commission (CMC) of the CPC. It is legally obliged to follow the principle of civilian control of the military, although in practical terms this principle has been implemented in such a way as to ensure the PLA is under the absolute control of the Communist Party of China. Its commander in chief is the Chairman of the Central Military Commission (usually the General Secretary of the Communist Party of China). The Ministry of National Defense, which operates under the State Council, does not exercise any authority over the PLA and is far less powerful than the CMC.

Military service is compulsory by law; however, compulsory military service in China has never been enforced due to large numbers of military and paramilitary personnel. In times of national emergency, the People's Armed Police and the People's Liberation Army militia act as a reserve and support element for the PLAGF.

According to the Forbes magazine, the people’s Republic of China follows three main geopolitical guidelines and these are as follows: To maintain internal unity in the Han Chinese regions; To maintain control of its buffer regions; To protect the coast from foreign encroachment.
The most recent Chinese geopolitical trickery was the tinkering with its
maritime borders and the land reclamation in the South China Sea. By building artificial islands in the South China Sea, the People’s Republic is extending its territorial waters further into the international waters and thus creating points of tension, by altering its own Territorial, Contiguous and Exclusive Economic zones, and the same zones of other nations. Japan, Vietnam and the Philippines are disputing the reclamation of land and the building of naval, military and air bases on the newly surfaced artificial islands. The USA being a close ally to these pacific nations declared that USA’s security interests in the region are in jeopardy and is keeping a close eye on the maritime expansions of the Chinese state ever since. Another point of tensions between the giants is Taiwan, or the “Republic of China”, as it is officially known, the government that lost control of mainland China to the communist forces, and was declared as a rogue government by the People’s Republic, after the democratic and the communist governments took part after the WW2. The Republic of China or Taiwan is also allied with and under the military protection of the United States of America.
Another maritime contender for supremacy in Asia is of course India, with whom China has old territorial disputes and, which is also a very close and reliable ally to the USA.  With all the contradictions for maritime control in the region, and with the global superpowers involved, all the international onlookers hope, that these land and sea disputes will be agreed upon without the use of violence or live and hot conflicts between the militaries of the corresponding countries.
The fear of escalations comes from the fact that, China remains somehow isolated in the Pacific, and this may result in the use of the military to reassure its geopolitical interests. The closest ally of China on the geopolitical scenery is of course Russia, a nation and state that also does not like for its back being pushed against the wall, if we are allowed to say so.

China education is the largest education system in the world. On June 2018, there were 9.75 million students taking the National Higher Education Entrance Examination (Gao Kao) in China. Investment in education accounts for about 4% of total GDP in China. In 1986, the Chinese government passed a compulsory education law, making nine years of education mandatory for all Chinese children. Today, the Ministry of Education estimates that above 99 percent of the school-age children have received universal nine-year basic education.
On March 2018, Ministry of Education of the People's Republic of China announced a total of 489,200 international students were studying in China in 2017. International students have enrolled in over 935 higher education institutions in China. China has a long history of providing education to international students studying in high schools and universities in China. Over the past few years, the number of international students who study abroad in China has significantly increased every year.

The higher education sector has growth as well. China has increased the proportion of its college-age population in higher education to over 20 percent now from 1.4 percent in 1978. At the same time, China is improving the quality of education through a major effort at school curriculum reform.

Higher education in China centers on a system of 2,000 universities and colleges, with more than six million students. The system includes Bachelors, Masters and Doctoral degrees, as well as non-degree programs, and is also open to foreign students.

China has a consistent teacher development system. Teaching has historically been and remains today a highly respected profession in China. Teachers have strong preparation in their subject matter and prospective teachers spend a great deal of time observing the classrooms of experienced teachers, often in schools attached to their universities. Once teachers are employed in school, there is a system of induction and continuous professional development in which groups of teachers work together with master teachers on lesson plans and improvement.

Industry was 72.8% of China’s gross domestic product (GDP) in 2005. Industry (including mining, manufacturing, construction, and power) contributed 46.8 percent of GDP in 2010 and occupied 27 percent of the workforce in 2007. As of 2015, the manufacturing industrial sectors contribute 40% of China's GDP. The manufacturing sector produced 44.1 percent of GDP in 2004 and accounted for 11.3 percent of total employment in 2006. China is the world’s leading manufacturer of chemical fertilizers, cement, and steel. Prior to 1978, most output was produced by state-owned enterprises. As a result of the economic reforms that followed, there was a significant increase in production by enterprises sponsored by local governments, especially townships and villages, and, increasingly, by private entrepreneurs and foreign investors, but by 1990 the state sector accounted for about 70 percent of output. By 2002 the share in gross industrial output by state-owned and state-holding industries had decreased with the state-run enterprises themselves accounting for 46 percent of China’s industrial output. In November, 2012 the State Council of the People's Republic of China mandated a "social risk assessment" for all major industrial projects. This requirement followed mass public protests in some locations for planned projects or expansions.

According to the World Bank, the People’s Republic of China’s GDP per capita for 2017 was 8.826 USD per capita, which given the humongous population is not a bad achievement, but is far from the leading positions in this global economic indicator.

With the exponential economic growth in the last decade or so, the People’s Republic of China now has the world’s largest economy. 

Despite being self-described and portrayed as a communist state and regime, by itself and by many of the world’s political analysts, the common opinion is that, the People’s Republic of China is one of five states, which still are officially under communist rule and regime. Are these conclusions objective? - The modernization in the Chinese policies is evident. The ever growing private sector in China is a clear sign that the government is veering away from this political model and adopting more evolved policies, to keep its economy relevant, on the world’s contemporary capital markets. However, the state still controls and regulates the markets internally, as well as many other aspects of the everyday life of its people. One of the latest examples of the consciousness of the state towards the people is the categorization, of the population in a five level automated system, which determines and analyses the individual’s
productivity, social endeavors and attitude to the smallest details, and later determines for example the personal credit ratings of the people. Some argue that it could be very unfair, as this categorization system is very much automated and a person could lose “social points”, by simply buying a bottle of alcoholic concentrate from the local supermarket.
The majority of the banks are state owned, which is a clear indicator for state intervention in the internal financial markets of the country, another sign for some of the old-school communist and socialist, views of the government and the political elite.

In my friends circle, we have a very popular saying – “Let’s eat the Chinese”, this we like to say when we want to go to a Chinese Restaurant with such appetite, that we would even cannibalize the staff of the restaurant. This is because the meals are so delicious, there is probably no human on this planet that does not love
Chinese food. What is there to taste besides the legendary fried rice with vegetables and chicken in sweet and sour sauce?

Sweet and sour pork has a bright orange-red color, and a delicious sweet and sour taste. At the very beginning there was only sweet and sour pork, but to meet demands, there have been some developments on this dish. Now, the pork can be substituted by other ingredients like chicken, beef or pork ribs. Read the DIY recipes of sweet and sour pork ribs.
Kung Pao Chicken - is a famous Sichuan-style specialty, popular with both Chinese and foreigners. The major ingredients are diced chicken, dried chili, and fried peanuts. People in Western countries have created a Western-style gong bao chicken, for which the diced chicken is covered with cornstarch, and vegetables, sweet and sour sauce and mashed garlic are added.
Peking Roasted Duck. Peking duck is a famous dish from Beijing, enjoying world fame, and considered as one of China’s national dishes. Peking duck is savored for its thin and crispy skin. The Sliced Peking duck is often eaten with pancakes, sweet bean sauce, or soy with mashed garlic. It is a must-taste dish in Beijing! Read more about Peking Roasted Duck.
Szechuan Chicken is a member of this category. Its sauce is a chili garlic paste made with whole or ground chili. Fundamentally, it is comprised of the following ingredients: boneless, skinless chicken breasts, egg whites and cornstarch for the meat, Shao Xing rice, dry sherry or cooking wine, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco sauce or chili paste, sesame oil, soy sauce, brown sugar, cayenne pepper, crushed red chilies, minced ginger, carrot strips, sliced red bell peppers, chopped green onions, and vegetable oil for the sauce. The dish is then cooked by frying the battered chicken, pan frying the vegetables, and mixing the sauce, stir-frying everything for a minute or two. Szechuan chicken is best served with steamed rice. The dish is very easy to cook. Taste-wise, it renders a good mix of sweet and spicy.

And this will be it friends, whether you are a fan of the delicious food, the vibrant culture or you would like to study the politics in China, who self-proclaim as communist but don’t fulfill this definition to the full extent, I hope this article was useful to you and our opinions correspond оr complete each other.

With the wishes for good health and best of luck we leave our read of the land of the Tiger, the Dragon and the Yellow River. A populous nation that showed to the world, that with persistency and hard work, even a back water economy can be lifted to match the world’s best competitors.
Good bye and take care
. Zàijiàn! Zhàogù zìjǐ! 见!顾自己!

Writing and summary by: Velin Nedkov
Mladinski Informativen I Sovetodaven Centar Info Sega
Prilep, Macedonia

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