3. China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan

Throughout the past 5,000 years, China has been one of the leading civilizations of the world. However, in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, the heavily populated country—which has a land mass that is slightly smaller than the continental United States—was preoccupied with famines, military defeats, foreign occupation, natural disasters, and civil unrest leading to the establishment of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) in 1949, and separating Taiwan as an independent country. In 1999, Hong Kong reverted to China’s dominion when the British lease on it expired, creating a third major Chinese market. Although Hong Kong is part of the PRC, it is allowed to interact with the rest of the world in a somewhat ...

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