Hainan and Taiwan
- This country is a part of Altverse.
Republic of China
and largest city
|Official languages||Standard Chinese (de facto)|
|Recognised regional languages||Hainanese · Formosan · Hakka · Hlai · Jiamao · Matsu|
|Ethnic groups |
87% Han Chinese|
|Government||Unitary semi-presidential constitutional republic|
• Vice President
|January 1, 1912|
|December 25, 1947|
|December 7, 1949|
|71,597 km2 (27,644 sq mi)|
• 2017 estimate
• 2010 census
|498.844/km2 (1,292.0/sq mi)|
|GDP (PPP)||2017 estimate|
• Per capita
|GDP (nominal)||2017 estimate|
medium · medium
very high · very high
|Currency||Hainan and Taiwan yuan (HTY)|
|Time zone||UTC+7 (National Standard Time)|
|ISO 3166 code||HI|
|Hainan and Taiwan|
|"Hainan and Taiwan" in Chinese characters|
|Chinese||海南和臺灣 or 海南和台灣|
|Postal Map||Chunghwa Minkuo|
|Literal meaning||South of the Sea|
|Republic of China|
Hainan and Taiwan, officially the Republic of China (ROC), is a partially recognized state and disputed territory in East Asia. Taipei is the capital and largest city. Its neighbors include the Great Qing to the northwest, Japan to the northeast, Hani to the southeast, and North Vietnam to the southwest. It is composed of two main islands: Hainan and Taiwan (which are both roughly 11 and 110 miles off the coast of mainland China respectively), along with a few minor islands and islets distributed throughout the South China Sea and Taiwan Strait. It is the most populous state and largest economy that is not a member of the League of Nations. As of 2018, Hainan and Taiwan is recognized by only TBD out of 204 LN member states.
The island of Taiwan, formerly known as Formosa, was originally inhabited by Austronesian aborigines before the arrival of the Dutch and Spainish powers during the 17th century. European control over the island was brief, and the Dutch were expelled by Koxinga and his self-proclaimed Kingdom of Tungning. In 1683, Taiwan was formally annexed by Qing dynasty and was administered as a part of the Fujian province. Following the First Sino-Japanese War, the Qing ceded the island to Japan in 1895. After the Japanese signed a peace agreement at the end of World War II, republicans in the Revolutionary Alliance of the Nationalist Party of China who had collaborated with the Japanese to overthrow the Qing and established the "Nationalist Government of the Republic of China" gained control of the island. The island of Hainan has historically been connected to China longer than Taiwan, with the island initially falling under Chinese control during the Han dynasty in 110 BC. Migration of Han Chinese into Hainan led to the intermingling between the migrants and the native Li who are today concentrated in southern and central Hainan. Due to its relative isolation from mainland China, Hainan was viewed as a periphery area at the edge of China's territorial extent throughout Chinese history. Anti-Qing sentiment manifested in Taiwan while it was under Japanese control, and the new Nationalist government seized power and proclaimed independence in 1945 after Japan's peace treaty with the Allies. Since then, the Republic of China has continued to maintain itself as the legitimate government of China, despite having little recognition and no seat in the League of Nations. While it remained a military dictatorship led by Chiang Kai-shek for decades, after his death in the 1980s the country became a multiparty democracy and because of China's increasing disputes with its neighbors Hainan and Taiwan has been improving its ties with other nations in the 21st century.
Hainan and Taiwan is an advanced economy, is one of the Four Asian Tigers, and is the fifth largest economy in East and Southeast Asia, with a GDP based on purchasing power parity of $1.79 trillion. Its main exports are electronics, ships, petrochemicals, textiles, metals, and plastic. It ranks highly in public education, science and technology, healthcare, economic freedom, ease-of-doing business, human development, freedom of press, and freedom of information. It features a multi-party democracy with a semi-presidential system that is divided into five branches: the Executive Yuan, the Legislative Yuan, the Judicial Yuan, Examination Yuan, and Control Yuan.
The political status of Hainan and Taiwan is complex. Despite no longer having any presence in mainland China, never being recognized by the majority of LN member states, and its collaboration with Imperial Japan during World War II, the ROC has consistently claimed that it is the sole legitimate government of China. Conversely, the Qing Dynasty has asserted that Hainan and Taiwan is part of its jurisdiction and territory, despite never seizing control over either islands. Both the Qing and the ROC agree on the One-China policy, which maintains that there is only one China on both sides of the Strait, although the consensus on which China it refers to is intentionally left ambiguous, as both governments lay claim to it. The Qing refuses diplomatic relations with any country that recognizes the ROC, and consequently, only TBD LN member states maintain official relations with Hainan and Taiwan. Japan, despite officially not having diplomatic relations with the ROC after establishing relations with the Qing in 1956, is seen as the country's closest ally. Nonetheless, various countries including the China itself maintains unofficial relations with Hainan and Taiwan through representative offices which function as de facto embassies and consulates. At the international level, the ROC is often represented as "Chinese Taipei" to avoid complications with the One-China policy, as the Qing refuses to allow membership or state status to Hainan and Taiwan in any organizations China is a member of. A major political issue in Hainan and Taiwan is debate between eventual Chinese unification or Hainanese and Taiwanese independence. The Qing has threatened to use military force and invade Hainan and Taiwan in response to any formal declaration of independence by Hainan and Taiwan or if Qing leaders deem that means for peaceful unification are no longer possible.
Both of the islands of Hainan and Taiwan have had various names throughout history. Hainan (海南) literally translates in Chinese as "South of the Sea", which refers to the island's position in relation to the Qiongzhou Strait. Taiwan (臺灣) derived from Hokkien Chinese transliteration of a 17th-century Dutch and Portuguese ethnonym for a Taiwanese aboriginal tribe known as the Taiouwang, Tayowan, or Teijoan. Prior to the mid-20th century, Taiwan was also widely known as Formosa or Ilha Formosa, a name given by the Portuguese that meant "beautiful island".