The People’s Republic of China is the world’s most populous nation and one of the largest economies (2nd by nominal GDP, 1st by purchasing power parity). The world’s largest exporter, China produces a vast array of agricultural, industrial and consumer products. With its growing prosperity, China has been able to transform itself into a global economic powerhouse over the past few decades.
In the late 1970s, China began to reform their economy, moving away from the strict socialist system that had been in place for many decades. Moving toward a more market-oriented economy, China was able to achieve annual average GDP growth of 9.91% from 1979 to 2010. While growth has slowed since, the average annual GDP growth from 2012 to 2016 has still been an impressive 7.7%.
With a population of over 1.3 billion, China has a massive work force. Over 1 billion Chinese are of working age (15-64 years old). Economic reforms of the past few decades have led to a growing Chinese middle class with far more disposable income than previously.
Although China is the 3rd largest country by area, much of the land is sparsely populated. 94% of the population live in the eastern 40% of the country, with 55.6% of people residing in urban areas. China has a staggering number of large cities – 160 with a population of over 1 million, including 14 with a population of over 5 million. As more and more Chinese migrate into the cities for the education and employment opportunities offered, the urban population is expected to continue to grow.
Currency exchange rates in NZD on December 12, 2018
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- Ancient bronze vessel looted from Old Summer Palace in 1860 returned to China
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- Analysts warn China financial situation remains weak despite rise in bank lending
- All eyes on China’s annual conference as Xi Jinping prepares to unveil economic game plan for 2019 amid trade war tensions with the US
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Hong Kong is a meeting point of Western and Eastern cultures. It is a major shipping and logistics hub as well as being an important financial center. For a hundred years Hong Kong was part of the British Empire over which time European banking, legal and administrative systems were established. In 1997 Hong Kong was returned to China where it continues to be an important gateway between China and and the world.
Hong Kong's economy is characterised by free trade, low taxation and minimum government intervention. Whilst it only has a population of 7 million, Hong Kong is the world's 9th largest trading economy. Hong Kong is also a major service economy, with particularly strong links to mainland China and the rest of the Asia-Pacific region.
Hong Kong is New Zealand’s 12th export destination, 8th largest investment destination and the 6th largest source for inward investment into New Zealand. Much of Mainland China's investment into New Zealand flows through Hong Kong. Currently about 3,000 New Zealanders are living in Hong Kong. The relationship between the two regions was further strengthened with the Closer Economic Partnership Agreement, which came into effect on 1st January 2011.
Hong Kong is nestled on the eastern region of the Pearl River Delta area, engulfed by the People's Republic of China towards the southeastern coastal side, where the South China Sea faces the province from the southern side, and the Guangdong area from the northern side. Hong Kong is constituted with three major provinces namely Hong Kong Island, Kowloon, and the New Territories. From the north end the province of the Kowloon Peninsula is well connected to the New Territories, which thereby is linked to the Mainland China through the streams of Sham Chun River (Shenzhen River). The place is comprised of 262 islands near the South China Sea where Ap Lei Chau province is compactly inhabited. Lantau is the largest province where the local natives reside while the region of Hong Kong Island falls in the second position as far as concentration of population is concerned.
Hong Kong's climate is sub-tropical, with temperatures dropping below 10 degrees Celsius in winter and exceeding 31 degrees Celsius in summer. It is warm, sunny and dry in autumn, cool and dry in winter, and hot, humid and rainy from spring to summer. The average annual rainfall: 1,924.7mm, wettest month is July and driest month is March. Click here for More on Hong Kong's climate.
- Bulletin updated at 22:45 HKT 12/12/2018The northeast monsoon is bringing cold weather to Guangdong. Local temperatures in the evening were generally around three degrees lower than those of yesterday. Weather forecast for tonight and tomorrow:Mainly cloudy. Rather cool tomorrow morning with a minimum temperature of about 13 degrees in the urban areas, and a couple of degrees lower in the […]
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- Former Hong Kong chief executive CY Leung cleared of any wrongdoing over HK$50 million UGL payment after four-year ICAC probe
- Scout leader who molested four boys to ‘vent negative emotions’ spared jail by Hong Kong judge
- Greater Bay Area can tap into Sun Yat-sen’s life and develop heritage trails to attract more visitors, says Guangdong’s deputy governor Xu Ruisheng
- Why Story of Yanxi Palace is a bigger deal for Hongkongers than US-China trade war, Typhoon Mangkhut and the World Cup
- Diaoyu Islands activist from Hong Kong starts fire at Tokyo’s Yasukuni Shrine in protest at ‘Japanese militarism’
- Hong Kong’s biggest and last data centre site fetches HK$5.45 billion
- Link Reit sells a dozen suburban Hong Kong malls to consortium led by Gaw Capital for US$1.53 billion
- Top US diplomat in Hong Kong met Beijing leader on city affairs amid furore over Huawei’s Sabrina Meng Wanzhou
Currency exchange rates in NZD on December 12, 2018
Taiwan is an island in Southeast Asia, located north of the Philippines off the Southeast coast of China. In July 2013, Taiwan and New Zealand signed a free trade agreement, making it an attractive place for Kiwis to do business.
Taiwan has a population of over 23 million people. Approximately 78% of its people live in urban areas. The largest city is the capital, Taipei, with 2.6 million people. Other major cities include Kaohsiung (1.5 million), Taichung (1.2 million) and Tainan (815,000). Most of the population and infrastructure are on the western coast of the island due to the rugged, mountainous terrain of the east. With a GDP per capita of $46,800, Taiwan is one of the most prosperous nations in Southeast Asia.
China has claimed sovereignty over the island since 1949. Due to China’s assertions that Taiwan is a province of China, Taiwan has official diplomatic ties with few nations. A notable exception to this is the USA, which in 1979 passed the Taiwan Relations Act promising to help the island defend themselves. Despite these sensitive relations between Taiwan and China, Taiwan has established itself as one of Asia’s largest traders. In recent years relations have softened somewhat, with the ECFA (Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement) signed between the two nations in 2010.
Taiwan exported $284.9 billion worth of goods in 2015. The bulk of these exports were related to consumer electronics, such as electronics, semiconductors and televisions. China and Hong Kong collectively take approximately 40% of Taiwan’s exports, with the USA, Japan and Singapore its next biggest export partners. In 2015 Taiwan imported $228.6 billion worth of goods, most of which were energy related (petroleum, natural gas and coal).
Taiwanese Mandarin is the Standard Mandarin spoken in Taiwan. Its standard lect is known in Taiwan as Kuo-yü (Guóyǔ in Pinying; literally: "National language"). The official Guoyu is almost identical to the official language of Mainland China, called Pǔtōnghuà, with the exception of their writing systems. Taiwanese Mandarin uses traditional Chinese characters, as opposed to the simplified Chinese characters on the mainland.
The north part of Taiwan belongs to sub-tropical climate zone, while the south part belongs to the tropical climate zone. Winters are warm and summers are hot and wet, with typhoons and thunderstorms. Because Taiwan is a relatively small island, the ocean breezes have a cooling effect so it never feels too hot.
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- Taiwan admitted into Apec privacy system
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- Taiwan is model of women’s empowerment in politics: AIT chief
- Chinese military official: ‘We should be ready to take over Taiwan’
Currency exchange rates in NZD on December 12, 2018