Taiwan, also known as Formosa, is the largest island of the Republic of China (ROC) in East Asia. Taiwan is located east of the Taiwan Strait, off the southeastern coast of mainland China. Since the end of World War II in 1945, the island group has been under the government of the Republic of China.
Separated from the Asian continent by the 180-kilometre-wide Taiwan Strait, the main island of the group is 394 kilometres (245 mi) long and 144 kilometres (89 mi) wide. To the northeast are the main islands of Japan, and the southern end of the Ryukyu Islands of Japan is directly to the east; the Philippines lie to its south. The mountainous island spans across the Tropic of Cancer and is covered by tropical and subtropical vegetation. Other minor islands and islets of the group include the Pescadores, Green Island, and Orchid Island as well as the Diaoyutai Islands which have been controlled by Japan since the 1970s and are known as the Senkaku-shotÅ.
The island group has been governed by the Republic of China (ROC) since 1945 when the ROC acquired Taiwan from Japan as a result of World War II. Four years later the ROC lost the Chinese Civil War to the Communist Party of China and retreated to Taiwan. Taiwan now composes most of ROC's territory and the ROC itself is commonly known as "Taiwan". The political status of Taiwan is complex because it is claimed by the People's Republic of China (PRC) which was established in 1949 on mainland China and considers itself the successor state to the ROC. Japan had originally acquired Taiwan from the Qing Empire in 1895 per Article 2 of Treaty of Shimonoseki. At the end of World War II, Japan renounced all claims to sovereignty over its former colonial possessions after World War II including Taiwan and Penghu Islands.
Taiwan's rapid economic growth in the decades after World War II has transformed it into an advanced economy as one of the Four Asian Tigers. This economic rise is known as the Taiwan Miracle. It is categorized as an advanced economy by the IMF and high-income economy by the World Bank. Its technology industry plays a key role in the global economy. Taiwanese companies manufacture a large portion of the world's consumer electronics, although most of them are made in their factories in mainland China.