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Republic of Korea

조선민국 (Korean)
Joseon Minguk)
Flag of
Coat of arms
Motto: 弘益人間
hongik ingan
"Benefit broadly in the human world."
Anthem: 愛國歌
Capital Seoul
Official languages Korean
Korean Sign Language
Recognised regional languages Cheju-mal
Official script Hangul
Ethnic groups
97.1% Korean
2.9% Other
60.3% No religion
25.8% Christianity
8.5% Buddhism
5.4% Other
Demonym(s) Korean
Government Unitary presidential constitutional republic
• President
Kwang Won-joong
Han Duck-soo
Kim Jin-pyo
Kim Myeong-soo
Yoo Nam-suck
Legislature National Assembly
• Gojoseon
2333 BCE
57 BCE
• Goryeo dynasty
• Joseon dynasty
17 July 1392
12 October 1897
22 August 1910
1 March 1919
11 April 1919
2 September 1945
6 September 1945
3 March 1981
• 2020 census
GDP (PPP) estimate
• Total
$5.317 trillion
• Per capita
GDP (nominal) estimate
• Total
$4.031 trillion
• Per capita
Currency Korean Republic Won (₩) (KRW)
Time zone UTC+9 (Korea Standard Time)
Date format yyyy년 m월 d일
yyyy. m. d. (CE)
Driving side right
Internet TLD .kr

Korea, officially the Republic of Korea (Korean: 조선민국; Joseon Minguk) is a country in East Asia. It borders China and Russia to the north and shares a maritime border with Japan to the south via the Strait of Korea. Korea is surrounded by the Yellow Sea to the west and the Sea of Japan (East Sea) to the east. Seoul is the capital and largest city. Other major cities are Busan, Hamheung, Pyeongyang, and Gwangju. As a developed country, Korean citizens enjoy universal healthcare, universal education, and one of the world’s fastest internet connection speeds. Korea has the world’s fifth largest GDP by nominal and the sixth largest by GDP (PPP), and is the world’s ninth largest exporter and ninth largest importer.

The Korean Peninsula was inhabited as early as the Lower Paleolithic period. Its first kingdom was noted in Chinese records in the early 7th century BCE. Following the unification of the Three Kingdoms of Korea into Silla and Balhae in the late 7th century, Korea was ruled by the Koryo dynasty (918–1392) and the Choson dynasty (1392–1897). The succeeding Korean Empire (1897–1910) was annexed in 1910 into the Empire of Japan. Japanese rule ended following Japan's surrender in World War II, after which the People's Republic of Korea (1945–1981) was founded.

After the current constitution was established, Korea entered a military alliance with the United States, which continues to the date.

Administrative divisions

Map Namea Hangul Hanja Revised McCune-Reischauer Population (2060)c
Special City (특별시 Teukbyeolsi)a
Seoul 서울특별시 서울特別市 Seoul Teukbyeolsi Sŏul T'ŭkpyŏlshi 15,388,201
District Capital (부경시 Bugyeongsi)a
Pyeongyang 평양부경시 平壤府京市 Pyeongyang Bugyeongsi P'yŏngyang Pugyŏngshi 4,992,651
Sariwon 사리원부경시 沙里院府京市 Sariwon Bugyeongsi Sariwŏn Pugyŏngshi 1,350,620
Hamheung 함흥부경시 咸興府京市 Hamheung Bugyeongsi Hamhŭng Pugyŏngshi 3,867,882
District (부 Bu)a
Pyeongan 평안부 平安府 Pyeongan-bu P'yŏng'an-pu 8,081,188
Hwanghae 황해부 黃海府 Hwanghae-bu Hwanghae-bu 3,703,175
Bukdong (Northeast) 북동부 北東府 Bukdongbu Puktongbu XX