Dec 8, 1949 CE: Two Chinas

Dec 8, 1949 CE: Two Chinas

On December 8, 1949, the government of the Republic of China moved its capital to the island of Taiwan, signaling a communist victory in China’s Civil War and beginning the “Two Chinas” issue.


7 - 12


Social Studies, World History

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On December 8, 1949, the government of the Republic of China moved its capital from Beijing to the city of Taipei, on the island of Taiwan. This signaled the victory of Mao Zedong’s Communist forces over Chiang Kai-shek's Nationalists in the Chinese Civil War, following the establishment of the People’s Republic of China two months earlier. The Chinese Civil War started in the 1920s and lasted for more than two decades. The competing governments of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and the Republic of China (ROC) form the basis of the so-called “Two Chinas” issue. The PRC is a communist country withan economy that mixes socialist and capitalist elements. Historically, the nation had a command economy. The ROC, often just called “Taiwan,” is a democratic state with a capitalist economy. The Two Chinas issue is often called "cross-Strait" relations. Most of the world officially recognizes the PRC as the government of China, with some nations also recognizing Taiwan’s sovereignty. The United States, which did not officially recognize the PRC until 1979, follows a one-China policy.

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National Geographic Society
National Geographic Society
Last Updated

May 20, 2022

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