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Administrative Division System

China's administrative units are currently based on a three-level system dividing the nation into provinces, counties, and townships: 

-The country is divided into provinces, autonomous regions, and municipalities directly under the Central Government; 

-A province or an autonomous region is subdivided into autonomous prefectures, counties, autonomous counties, and/or cities; 

-A county or an autonomous county is subdivided into townships, national minority townships, and/or towns. 

Municipalities directly under the Central Government and large cities are subdivided into districts and counties; autonomous prefectures are subdivided into counties, autonomous counties, and cities. Autonomous regions, autonomous prefectures, and autonomous counties are all autonomous national minority areas. 

The Constitution specifically empowers the state to establish special administrative regions when necessary. A special administrative region is a local administrative area directly under the Central Government.

At present, China was divided into 23 provinces, 5 autonomous regions, 4 municipalities directly under the Central Government, and 2 special administrative region (see the following table).

China's Provinces, Autonomous Regions, Centrally Administered
Municipalities and Special Administrative Regions

Name

Seat of Government

Area (100,000sqkm)

Population (100,000)

Beijing Municipality

Beijing

0.168

125.7

Tianjin Municipality

Tianjin

0.113

95.9

Hebei Province

Shijiazhuang

1.900

661.4

Shanxi Province

Taiyuan

1.560

320.4

Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region

Hohhot

11.830

236.2

Liaoning Province

Shenyang

1.457

417.1

Jilin Province

Changchun

1.870

265.8

Heilongjiang Province

Harbin

4.690

379.2

Shanghai Municipality

Shanghai

0.062

147.4

Jiangsu Province

Nanjing

1.026

721.3

Zhejiang Province

Hangzhou

1.018

447.5

Anhui Province

Hefei

1.390

623.7

Fujian Province

Fuzhou

1.200

331.6

Jiangxi Province

Nanchang

1.666

423.1

Shandong Province

Jinan

1.530

888.3

Henan Province

Zhengzhou

1.670

938.7

Hubei Province

Wuhan

1.874

593.8

Hunan Province

Changsha

2.100

653.2

Guangdong Province

Guangzhou

1.860

727.0

Guangxi Autonomous Region

Nanning

2.363

471.3

Hainan Province

Haikou

0.340

76.2

Chongqing Municipality

Chongqing

0.820

307.5

Sichuan Province

Chengdu

4.880

855.0

Guizhou Province

Guiyang

1.700

371.0

Yunnan Province

Kunming

3.940

419.2

Tibet Autonomous Region

Lhasa

12.200

25.6

Shaanxi Province

Xi'an

2.050

361.8

Gansu Province

Lanzhou

4.500

254.3

Qinghai Province

Xining

7.200

51.0

Ningxia Autonomous Region

Yinchuan

0.664

54.3

Xinjiang Autonomous Region

Urumqi

16.000

177.4

Hong Kong Special Administrative Region

Hong Kong

0.01092

68.4 (in mid 1999)

Macao Special Administrative Region

Macao

0.00024

4.3

Taiwan Province

 

0.360

217.4 (at the end of 1997)

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