- north korea
- south korea
- hong kong
| • total||11,839,074 km2 (4,571,092 sq mi)|
| • total||1,666,471,330|
| • rank||2nd (world)|
| • density||140/km2 (360/sq mi)|
- utc+7 (mongolia)
- utc+8 (mongolia, china, hong kong, macau, taiwan)
- utc+9 (japan, south korea, north korea)
|languages and language families|
|hanyu pinyin||dōngyà or dōng yàxìyà|
|revised romanization||dong asia/dong asea/dong a|
|mongolian cyrillic||Зүүн Ази |
|revised hepburn||higashi ajia/tō-a|
east asia is the eastern subregion of asia, which is defined in both geographical and ethno-cultural terms. the region consists of china, hong kong, macau, mongolia, north korea, south korea, japan, and taiwan. the east asian states china, north korea, south korea, and taiwan are all unrecognized by at least one other east asian state. hong kong and macau are officially highly autonomous but are under effective chinese sovereignty. north asia borders east asia's north, southeast asia the south, south asia the southwest, and central asia the west. to the east is the pacific ocean, and to the southeast is micronesia (a pacific ocean island group, classified as part of oceania).
the region was the cradle of various ancient civilizations such as ancient china, ancient japan, ancient korea, and the mongol empire. east asia was one of the cradles of world civilization, with china, an ancient east asian civilization being one of the earliest cradles of civilization in human history. for thousands of years, china largely influenced east asia as it was principally the leading civilization in the region exerting its enormous prestige and influence on its neighbors. historically, societies in east asia have been part of the chinese sphere of influence, and east asian vocabulary and scripts are often derived from classical chinese and chinese script. the chinese calendar preserves traditional east asian culture and serves as the root to which many other east asian calendars are derived from. major religions in east asia include buddhism (mostly mahayana), confucianism and neo-confucianism, taoism, ancestral worship, and chinese folk religion in mainland china, hong kong, macau and taiwan, buddhism and shintoism in japan, and christianity, buddhism and sindoism in korea. tengerism and tibetan buddhism is prevalent among mongols and tibetans while other religions such as shamanism are widespread among the indigenous populations of northeastern china such as the manchus. major languages in east asia include mandarin chinese, japanese, and korean. major ethnic groups of east asia include the han, yamato, and koreans. there are 76 officially-recognized minority ethnic groups in east asia; 55 native to mainland china, 16 native to the island of taiwan (collectively taiwanese indigenous peoples), one native to the major japanese island of hokkaido (the ainu) and four native to mongolia.
east asians comprise around 1.7 billion people, making up about 38% of the population in continental asia and 22% of the global population. the region is home to major world metropolises such as beijing, hong kong, seoul, shanghai, taipei, and tokyo. although the coastal and riparian areas of the region form one of the world's most populated places, the population in mongolia and western china, both landlocked areas, is very sparsely distributed, with mongolia having the lowest population density of a sovereign state. the overall population density of the region is 133 inhabitants per square kilometre (340/sq mi), about three times the world average of 45/km2 (120/sq mi).
east asia has some of the world's largest and most prosperous economies: mainland china, japan, south korea, taiwan, hong kong, and macau.