The People's Republic of China, is a country in East Asia. With over one-fifth of the world's population, the PRC has the world's largest population. Due to its large and stable population, its rapidly growing economy and military spending and capabilities  the PRC is often considered an emerging superpower.
The Communist Party of China (CPC) has led the PRC under a one-party system since the country's establishment in 1949. Despite this, nearly half of the PRC's economy has been privatized in the past three decades under "Socialism with Chinese characteristics." During the 1980s, these economic reforms helped lift millions of people out of poverty, bringing the poverty rate down to 12% from the original one-third of the population. However, due to this mixing of market and planned economies, the PRC is faced with a number of problems associated with each, including unemployment and increasing rural/urban income gap. Despite shortcomings, greater prosperity has led to growing Chinese influence in global economic, political, military, scientific, technological, and cultural affairs.
In an ongoing dispute, the PRC claims sovereignty over Taiwan and some nearby islands, which have been controlled by the Republic of China since 1949. The PRC asserts the Republic of China to be an illegitimate and supplanted entity and administratively categorizes Taiwan as a province of the PRC. In contrast, the ROC does not recognize these claims, administering itself as a sovereign country with a democratically elected government and presidency. The term "mainland China" is sometimes used to denote the area under the PRC's rule, but usually excluding the two Special Administrative Regions, Hong Kong and Macau.