What is China?
The people’s Republic of China, commonly known as China, is located in east Asia and
borders 15 nations or any other county in the world. It is the most populous state in the world with a 1.3 billion citizens while the world’s population is 6.8 billion. That means other every 5 people
in the world, one is Chinese. China’s made of 56 distinctive ethnic groups with Han Chinese
making the 92% of its whole population. China is a single party state governed by the Communist Party of China whose power is enshrined in Chinese constitution. Though China is officially an atheist country, ITS RELIGIOUS ROOTS LIE WITHIN Confucianism, Buddhism and Taoism. and from these most social and moral values are derived. There are also a significant number of Chinese Muslims who arrived via the silk road trade route and still retain their distinct culture. HISTORY
China’s one of the world oldest civilizations dating back more than 5 million year and was ruled by successive dynasties until 1912.During these time, many great discoveries in fields of science and technology were made. Including theinventions of printing, paper, gun powder and compass. This period also saw the construction of many landmarks, such as the great wall which stretches over 4000 miles. Equals to 30 return travels from London to Paris. After a period of foreign occupation and civil war, the Communist Party of China led by Mao gained control of mainland China in 1949 and established People’s Republic of China. The modern China of today
is as much shaped by its past as its rapidly looking to the future. while many of its big cities are comparable to any in the west. The underlying culture is still vastly different. Traveling outside large urban areas also highlights the growing disparity between rich and poor.
Chinese which is the most widely spoken language in the world as well as one of the most impenetrable for foreigners. there are many regional dialects of Chinese although the most widely spoken is Mandarin and Cantonese. Chinese characters evolved over time from earlier forms of hieroglyphs. Chinese contains over 40,000 characters, but a well-educated person can recognize around 6,000 characters, some 3,000 are required to read a newspaper.
Chinese Zodiac’s a scheme that relates each year to an animal. this is the year of the rabbit, Chinese new year is the most important of traditional Chinese holidays. Windows and doors will be decorated with red color paper-cuts and couplets with popular themes of happiness, wealth, and longevity. On the Eve of Chinese New Year, supper is a feast with families. The family will end the night with firecrackers. Early the next morning, children will meet their parents by wishing them a healthy and happy new year and receive money in red paper envelopes. Chinese people love red color, which symbolizes prosperity and good luck. The period around Chinese new year is also the time of the largest human migration and between 150 and 200 million migrant workers in China bring home their earnings and go to have a unit dinner with their families on Chinese new year eve.
Most married couples in China are subjected to one child policy which is introduced in 1979 to curb massive population growth. It is believed to have prevented more than 300 million births since then. Another consequence of the policy has been the emergence of so called “little emperors”, a generation of self-centered consumers has developed. while Chinese education
system has rapidly developed there remains a heavy emphasis on passing exams. The upshot of this is that exams dictate the curriculum. While Chinese students can master and memorize incredible amounts of knowledge and information. They often lack the ability to critically think, develop their own opinions, and engage in creative activities. Due to the propensity for preferring sons over daughters. China is facing a large population imbalance with currently around 120 boys born for every 100 girls. By 2020 there will be 30 million more men than women.
Since economic opening up and reform policy began in 1978,China’s economy has grown 90 times bigger and is the fastest growing major economy in the world. China’s annual average GDP
growth is predicted to be 9.5 percent for the period of 2011 (to) 2015.It is the world’s largest
exporter and the second largest importer of goods. It is also known as the world’s second biggest
consumer of luxury goods. It now has the world’s second largest GDP at about 6 trillion US
dollars,40 percent of the United States. Although its per capita income a 4300 US dollar is still low and puts the China behind roughly a hundred countries. China’s growth has been uneven
when comparing different geographic regions and rural and urban areas. Development has also been mainly concentrated in the eastern coastal regions while the remainder of this country are left behind. In the past decade, China’s cities expanded at an average rate of 10 percent annually. A
scale unprecedented in human history. China’s country crazy for skyscrapers to show its economic
booming. More than 200 skyscrapers are being built now. Within next three years, there will be one skyscrapers completed every five days in China which will make the total 800 in five years time,4 times as many in the States. China is the world’s factory, one out of every three household
appliances/three toys/two pairs of shoes/two shirts are made in China. It has now become the world’s largest energy consumer. But relies on coal to supply about 70 percent of energy needs.
Leading Chinese environmental campaigners have warned that water pollution is one of the most serious threats facing China now yet with 34.6 billion US dollars invested in clean technology in 2009.China is the world’s leading investor in renewable energy technologies. China produces
more wind turbines and solar panels each year than any other country in the world.
Being such a large and ethnically diverse country each region has its own local specialties which the Chinese are often keen to try and introduce to others. Generally you will find hot and spicy food in the western and central China and cooler food in the south and north. A Chinese dining table is usually round allowing everyone to engage equally in conversation. It will be set with empty bowls, plates, and chopsticks for each person, food dishes are placed into the centre of the table to be shared between everyone. Don’t be put off if you see people spitting bones/seeds onto the plate. This is perfectly normal.
Contrary to what you might find in your local China Town, Chinese food is generally healthy and often beautifully presented. Texture, flavor, color, and aroma are key considerations for all Chinese cooks even above nutritional contents. Chinese dining is about showing respect and hospitality for the quests. Heavy drinking is often a part of doing business. And it is expected that you’ll keep up with others. If you do not want to drink alcohol, make it clear before you start.
Face(Mianzi),the concept of “face” can be loosely described as someone’s social status or
reputation in the eyes of others. Throughout a Chinese person’s life it must be maintained and enhanced through giving to and receiving from others in both words and actions. It may be
something as small as who gets in the lift first to the awarding of multi-million dollar contracts, but without it you will have very little power or influence. To make someone lose face or even unknowingly is a huge dishonor and could mean the end of a relationship.
Connections(Guanxi), Guanxi literally means “connections” or “relationships” as it
essentially boils down to exchanging favors. “You scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours”. It can loosely be compared with the idea of net working in the west. But usually goes much further in terms of developing and nurturing the relationship through social exchanges and favors which must be repaid at greater value in time. Relationships between family, friends and business associates are often closely interwoven. In such an environment issues of corruption are not uncommon when guanxi obligations take precedence over normal rules or laws.
The Doctrine of the Mean(Zhong Yong)
Known as the Doctrine of the Mean or Golden Mean this concept involves balancing one’s position among a group to maintain conformity and a sense of harmony. To do this while still achieving ones personal objectives is considered by the Chinese people the ideal way of living. This can be applied to the workplace where one should behave in a way which is seen to be neither ambitious nor lazy at the same time. Chinese people never openly criticize, ignore or make fun of a person in front of others, even jokingly. When discussing individual performance, they always emphasize good points before bad ones.
Chinese may ask you personal questions or make observations about your age, income, religion or appearance. Don’t take it personally. Likewise Chinese rarely say “please” or “ thank you” as this is seen as unnecessary formality between friends or family. In the Chinese meeting, often only the most senior attendees will talk and all questions should be directed to those people. Silence is not a sign of weakness in China, often the unsaid message is more important than what is being said verbally. To be successful in China requires different ways of thinking.
A Chinese historian Professor puts this way : The Chinese people are frank yet tactful , honest yet sophisticated, suspicious yet gullible, unscrupulous yet loyal, advocate etiquette yet often appear unmannered, stand for the golden mean yet are extreme, value the quality of being thrifty yet like to parade their wealth, maintain traditions when convenient yet love to chase modern fashion, believe contentment brings happiness yet often daydream about becoming overnight millionaires, believe the word of the fortune teller yet lack affiliation to any religion.
This is China, one big contradiction which refuses to be placed in a box, in China you will find all extremes but that’s all part of the challenge and adventure of doing business here. Be patient and have fun.