Chongqing, the biggest city in the world

Wednesday, 13 July 2011 - 05:14 pm (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General
Reading Time:  5 minutes

Chongqing at night © Jonipoon

Chongqing at night © Jonipoon

Chongqing is a major city in Southwest China and one of the five national central cities of the People’s Republic of China. Administratively, it is one of the PRC’s four direct-controlled municipalities (the other three are Beijing, Shanghai and Tianjin), and the only such municipality in inland China.

The municipality was created on 14 March 1997, succeeding the sub-provincial city administration that was part of Sichuan Province. As of November 2010, the municipality had a population of 32,000,000. It has jurisdiction over 19 districts, 17 counties, and four autonomous counties. With an area of 82,300 km² (31,800 mi²), it is the largest direct-controlled municipality, larger even than one province and an autonomous region, as well as Taiwan. It is the world’s largest municipality by population and one of the largest by area.

The municipal abbreviation, was approved by the State Council on 18 April 1997. Chongqing was also a municipality of the Republic of China administration, serving as its wartime capital during the Second Sino-Japanese War (1937–1945). Its abbreviated name is derived from the old name of a part of the Jialing River that runs through Chongqing and feeds the Yangtze River.

The city is one of the cities notable for history and culture in China, and notably, serves as the economic centre of the Upstream Yangtze area, a modern manufacturing centre and a transportation hub for Southwest China.

Chongqing was separated from Sichuan province and made into a municipality in its own right in March 1997 in order to accelerate its development and subsequently China’s relatively poorer western areas (see China Western Development strategy). An important industrial area in western China, Chongqing is also rapidly urbanising. For instance, statistics suggest that new construction added approximately 137,000 square meters (1.5 million square feet) daily of usable floor space to satisfy demands for residential, commercial and factory space. In addition, more than 1,300 people moved into the city daily, adding almost 100 million yuan (US$15 million) to the local economy.

Skyline of Chongqing © Oliver Ren

Skyline of Chongqing © Oliver Ren

Traditionally, due to its geographical remoteness, Chongqing and neighbouring Sichuan have been important military bases in weapons research and development. Chongqing’s industries have now diversified but unlike eastern China, its export sector is small due to its inland location. Instead, factories producing local-oriented consumer goods such as processed food, autos, chemicals, textiles, machinery and electronics are common.

The city has also invested heavily in infrastructure to attract investment. The network of roads and railways connecting Chongqing to the rest of China has been expanded and upgraded reducing logistical costs. Furthermore, the nearby Three Gorges Dam – the world’s largest – will not only supply Chongqing with power once completed but also allows ocean-going ships to reach Chongqing’s Yangtze River port. These infrastructure improvements have led to the arrivals of numerous foreign direct investors (FDI) in industries ranging from auto to finance and retailing; such as Ford, Mazda, HSBC, Standard Chartered Bank, Citibank, Deutsche Bank, ANZ Bank, Scotiabank, Wal-Mart, Metro AG and Carrefour among other multinational corporations.

Chongqing is the biggest inland river port in western China. Historically, most of its transportation, especially to eastern China, is via the Yangtze River. In recent years the amount of trading has increased because of the huge reserviour created behind The Three Gorges Dam.

Read more on TravelChinaGuide.com – Chongqing, LonelyPlanet.com – Chongqing, Wikitravel Chongqing, Wikivoyage Chongqing and Wikipedia Chongqing.








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