Location: An island nation separated from mainland China by the Formosa Strait
Area: 35,961 sq km
National composition: Chinese mostly
Official language: Chinese
Currency: Taiwan dollar = 100 cents
Other major cities: Kao-hsiung, T’ai-chung, T’ai-nan
Climate: Tropical monsoon type
Forests cover about half of the island. Fruit, rice, soya beans, sugar cane, sweet potatoes and tea are cultivated in fertile lowland areas. The Republic of China, as Taiwan is officially called, has deposits of coal, gold, oil, silver and rock salt. It has a well-developed manufacturing sector, producing textiles, plastics, electronics and other consumer goods, many of which are exported.