PWD Register


China is the most populous country on earth, with over 1.3 billion citizens. This is over 1/5 of the worlds total population. Due to China's family planning policies, the natural population growth has been declining. At the end of 2003, the Natural Birth rate was 6.01 per thousand for the total population. However, it was much lower in major cities, such as Shanghai, where the natural birth rate was 4.26 per thousand and the natural population growth rate was -3.29 per thousand.

Ethnic Groups Spoken and Written Language

China has a stunning amount of different ethnic groups with independent dialects and written languages. Some ethnic groups number in the millions (the Han number 1.2 billion), while many, such as the Orogen and Yugar comprise just a few thousand individuals.

The complete list of China's ethnic groups with written and spoken languages, listed largest to smallest, is as follows:

The Han, Mongolian, Hui, Tibetan, Uygur, Miao, Yi,
Zhuang, Bouyei, Korean, Manchu, Dong, Yao, Bai,
Tujia, Hani, Kazak, Dai, Li, Lisu, Va,
She, Gaoshan, Lahu, Shui, Dongxiang, Jingpo, Blang,
Kirgiz, Tu, Daur, Mulam, Qiang, Salar, Tajik,
Maonan, Gelao, Xibe, Achang, Pumi, Nu, Ozbek,
Russian, Ewenki, Naxi, Bonan, De'ang, Yugur, Tatar,
Lhoba, Jino, Derung, Oroqen, Hezhen, Moinba, and Gin

Although most of the ethnicities can be seen as ethnic groups, the correspondence is not one to one. For example, many Hui Chinese are indistinguishable from Han Chinese except for the fact that they practice Islam. Conversely, Hakka are often thought of as an ethnic group, but they are generally considered members of the Han ethnicity.

While Han Chinese make up the vast majority of China's total population, the population distribution is highly uneven with large parts of western China having Han Chinese as a minority. In addition the lumping of most Chinese into the majority Han obscures some of the large linguistic, cultural, and racial differences between persons within that group.

The multi-ethnic nature of China results in part by territories incorporated by the Qing dynasty, whose emperors were themselves Manchu and not members of the majority Han. Chinese ethnicities theory is heavily influenced by that of the Soviet Union. Official policy claims to be against assimilation and maintains that each ethnic group should have the right to develop its own culture and language.

The degree of integration of minority ethnic groups with the national community varies widely from group to group. With some groups, such as the Tibetans and the Uyghurs there is a great deal of resentment against the majority. Other groups such as the Zhuang, Hui Chinese, and ethnic Koreans are well integrated into the national community.

Religious Belief

During the cultural revolution, religion was actively supressed in China, Red Gaurd destroying temples and other religious sites in order to abolish old beliefs, culture, habits. It was the belief of Mao Zedong and his regime that religion would soon dissapear as people became educated and too scientific world views.

In 1978 during the time of reformation, religion was allowed to return to China in some degree. Some temples were reestablished and monks were allowed to wear their ceramonial dress in public.

This is a sign of a confident regime that no longer sees religion as a threat, and is willing to make consessions to raise the esteem of China in the intnernational world and utilize nationalist feelings of China's past to strengthen the allegiance of its people at home.

There are more than 100,000,000 religious believers in China, which, by elimination, leaves 1.2 Billion Chinese Atheists. However, religious freedom is protected under the Chinese constitution. "Citizens of the People's Republic of China enjoy freedom of religious belief. No state organ, public organization or individual may compel citizens to believe in, or not believe in, any religion; nor may they discriminate against citizens who believe in, or do not believe in, any religion. The state protects normal religious activities."

At the same time, China is less progressive than western countries such as the U.S., leaving specific restrictions on religion to prevent unlawful conduct and the endangerment of social order. China prohibits the addition of new religions, classifying them as cults run by charlatans who aim to take advantage of China's people.

There are over 100,000 religious sites in china, and many hundreds of thousands of religious professionals, monks, priests etc.

The most popular religions in China are Buddhism, Taoism, Islam, and Christianity (Protestant and Catholic both)

People's Life and Social Security

At the end of 2003 about 104 Million people were participating in Unemployment insurance and about 4 million actually receiving it.

109 Million Chinese were participating in Medical insurance.

45.73 were participating in employment injury insurance, and about 370,000 were compensated for being injured at work.

Approximately 7.9 million impoverished people received government relief funds.

The Welfare Lottery is a growing institution in China, grossing over 100 billion Yuan over the past 17 years. Of this money, 35 percent is used for social and welfare undertakings, 50 percent is distributed as prize money, and 15 percent is reserved to run the lottery itself. The success of the welfare lottery, as well as its sister Sports lottery, makes China the 8th highest grossing country in the world for lotteries.
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