Historical time zones of China

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The time zones of China refer to the time zone divisions used in China between 1918 and 1949. The first time zone plan was proposed by the Central Observatory (now Beijing Ancient Observatory) of the Beiyang government in Peking (Beijing) in 1918. The proposal divided the country into five time zones: Kunlun (UTC+05:30), Sinkiang-Tibet (UTC+06:00), Kansu-Szechwan (UTC+07:00), Chungyuan (UTC+08:00) and Changpai (UTC+08:30). These time zones were ratified in 1939 by the Nationalist government in the Standard Time Conference, hosted by the Ministry of Interior of Executive Yuan. Because of the Second Sino-Japanese War, it was also stated that Kansu-Szechwan time shall be the sole national time during the war time. After the war in 1945, these five times zones were implemented national widely. In 1949, after the Chinese Civil War, the Central People's Government abolished the five time zones and announced to use a single time zone UTC+08:00 named Beijing Time (北京时间). The term Chungyuan Standard Time (中原標準時間) was still used by the Nationalist government on Taiwan until the early 2000s.

Overview of the time zones[edit]

Times zones of China from 1918 to 1949 (incl. claimed territories)
Time offset UTC+05:30 UTC+06:00 UTC+07:00 UTC+08:00 UTC+08:30
Name Kunlun Sinkiang-Tibet Kansu-Szechwan Chungyuan Changpai
Chinese 崑崙時區 新藏時區 隴蜀時區 中原時區 長白時區
Pinyin Kūnlún Shíqū Xīn-Zàng Shíqū Lǒng-Shǔ Shíqū Zhōngyuán Shíqū Chángbái Shíqū
Name origin Kunlun Mountains Xinjiang and Tibet Gansu and Sichuan The Central Plain Changbai Mountains
Ref. longitude 82°30′E 90°E 105°E 120°E 127°30′E
Approx. present
day tz database
CN Asia/Kashgar CN Asia/Urumqi
MN Asia/Hovd
CN Asia/Chongqing
MN Asia/Ulaanbaatar
CN Asia/Shanghai
HK Asia/Hong_Kong
MC Asia/Macau
MN Asia/Choibalsan
TW Asia/Taipei
CN Asia/Harbin

Time zones and administrative divisions[edit]

Time zone Historical administrative divisions (as of 1945–49) Present administrative divisions
  • Western part of Sinkiang
  • Western part of Tibet Area
  • Eastern part of Sinkiang
  • Eastern part of Tibet Area
  • Western part of Sikang
  • Western part of Tsinghai
  • Western part of Mongolia Area (until 1946)
  • Kansu
  • Kwangsi
  • Kweichow
  • Ningsia
  • Shensi
  • Suiyuan
  • Szechwan
  • Yunnan
  • Eastern part of Sikang
  • Eastern part of Tsinghai
  • Central part of Mongolia Area (until 1946)
  • Anhwei
  • Chahar
  • Chekiang
  • Fukien
  • Honan
  • Hopeh
  • Hsingan
  • Hunan
  • Hupeh
  • Jehol
  • Kiangsi
  • Kiangsu
  • Kwangtung
  • Liaoning
  • Liaopeh
  • Shansi
  • Shantung
  • Taiwan (after 1945)
  • Eastern part of the Mongolia Area (until 1946)
  • Hainan Special Administrative Region (split from Kwangtung in 1949)
  • Antung
  • Heilungkiang
  • Hokiang
  • Kirin
  • Nunkiang
  • Sungkiang

See also[edit]