Province (China)

Province (China)

A province, in the context of China, is a translation of "sheng" (zh-cp|c=省|p=shěng), which is an administrative division. Together with municipalities, autonomous regions, and the special administrative regions, provinces make up the first level (known as the province level) of administrative division in China. [ [ Administrative divisions of China] ] Theoretically, provinces are also the first level division of the democratic island country officially known as the Republic of China (Taiwan), though this role has been diminished.

The mainland communist People's Republic of China (PRC) currently governs 22 provinces. The PRC also claims, but does not control, Taiwan as a 23rd province. The Republic of China (Taiwan) governs Taiwan, as well as some offshore islands including Kinmen and Matsu, very near to Fujian province.

In the People's Republic of China, every province has a Communist Party of China provincial committee, headed by a secretary. The committee secretary is first-in-charge of the province, rather than the governor of the provincial government.

Facts about the provinces

* Until the ROC (Taiwan) administration, Hebei was known as "Zhili", or "directly-ruled".
* Guangxi was made an autonomous region under the PRC government in 1958. Before then, it was a province like any other.
* The largest province by area is Qinghai, which also has the smallest population of just over 5.3 million, although Xinjiang and Tibetan "autonomous regions", effectively provinces, are larger.
* Eight of the provinces of the People's Republic of China have a sea coast. The remaining 14 are land-locked.
* Guangdong, Shandong and Liaoning all have a major peninsula.
* Guangdong is the only province bordering the only two Special Administrative Regions of China.
* Separated from Guangdong and established in 1988, Hainan is the youngest province of China.
* The Municipality of Chongqing was carved out of Sichuan province on June 12, 1997.

Map and list

Administrative divisions of the People's Republic of China. Note: this map depicts the theoretical administrative divisions of the People's Republic of China, which are not synchronized with the actual administrative divisions of the Republic of China (Taiwan). The People's Republic of China (PRC) controls mainland China, Hong Kong, and Macao while the Republic of China (Taiwan) controls Taiwan and nearby islands.

Notes::¹: in km²

The People's Republic of China abolished many of the provinces in the 1950s and converted a number of them into autonomous regions. Hainan was set up as a separate province in 1988, bringing the total number of provinces under its control to 22.


External links

* [ Interactive China map with province and city guides]

See also

* Zhou (country subdivision)
* Chinese federalism
* Taiwan Province
* Tiao-kuai
* List of China administrative divisions by population
* List of China provinces by compass

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