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November 22, 2011

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All China is represented here ...

SHANGHAI has become the epitome of China - all of the country's 56 ethnic groups are now represented in the city, according to the latest census.

The Shanghai Statistics Bureau said that up to the end of last year, the city had 275,600 people belonging to ethnic groups other than Han, the largest group in China.

The number of people from minority groups rose by 165 percent compared to the previous census in 2000, when the city had 54 ethnic groups.

The Hui was the largest minority ethnic group in the city, 28.3 percent of the total. Originally from northwest China, they can now be found all over the country. Most speak Mandarin.

Tujia and Miao ethnic groups are the other two relatively large minority ethnic groups in Shanghai. Tujia people, some 12 percent of the total, usually live in central China's Hunan and Hubei provinces. They have their own language, but it is in danger of dying out as most speak Mandarin.

The Miao, or Hmong, mainly live in several provinces in southern China. They make up 11 percent of Shanghai's total ethnic population.

Originally from China, the Miao ethnic group is also widely found in some southeastern Asian countries, such as Thailand and Vietnam.

The bureau said some minority ethnic groups, such as the Li, had no more than 100 people in Shanghai, and other groups even had less than 10.

According to the census, the Pudong New Area holds the most minority ethnic group people in Shanghai. Some 20 percent of such people live in Pudong. Meanwhile, compared to the census in 2000, more minority ethnic group population have moved to suburban areas.

Most of the people of minority ethnic groups come to Shanghai for work or education, especially advanced education. Near 30 percent of minority ethnic group people living in Shanghai have a college or higher education background.

China actively encourages minority ethnic group students to go to college or university. They can obtain extra points in the country's college entrance examination. If one parent belongs to a minority ethnic group, the child can be included in the group.


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