Vessels sailing under The People's Republic of China's flag are required to have on board this flag as part of flag state requirements that derive from maritime regulations in the International Code of Signals and the International Safety Management (ISM) Code. These codes are published by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) as an ongoing effort to reinforce maritime safety procedures and communications to the international maritime community. Fleet management companies and ship owners are responsible to ensure that each vessel in their respective fleets have the appropriate flag signage onboard to be in compliance. This flag is used to identify the flag state a vessel is sailing under and to communicate with other vessels under the provisions of the International Code of Signals.
The flag of the People's Republic of China is a bold red color that makes this flag stand out. It contains five golden stars in the upper corner nearest the flagpole, featuring one large star and four smaller ones in a semicircle. The bold red color represents the communist revolution, and the five stars and their relationship and placement on the flag, represent the unity of the Chinese people under the leadership of the CPC, Communist Party of China. The flag is also sometimes referred to as the "Five-star Red Flag". It was designed by Zeng Liansong, from Wenzhou, Zhejiang, who designed this flag for the Preparatory Committee of the New Political Consultative Conference, shortly following the Chinese Civil War in July 1949, as part of a design competition. Other flags used in the People's Republic of China also use a red background to symbolize the revolution and conjunction with other important political symbols of China.
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