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Hebei Province

Population: 68.1 million

Urban population: 22.8 million

Nationalities: Han, Hui, Manchu, Mongolian, and Korean.

Area: 187,700 km2

GDP (2007): CNY1,161,370,000

Local Weather:Click for Chengde, Hebei Forecast

Altitude: above 1,000 meters in the mountain areas; under 50 meters on the Hebei Plain in the southeast.

Climatic features: temperate continental climate; windy in the spring; hot, rainy summers; dry winters.

Average temperature: -14oC to -2oC in January, 20oC - 27oC in July.

Annual average rainfall: 400 - 800 mm, high precipitation on the seaward side of mountains.

Physical features: high in the north, northwest, and west; low in the southeast; faces the Bohai Gulf.

Mountains: Yanshan Mountains in the north; Taihang Range along the western border.

Rivers: Haihe River and tributaries; Luanhe River in the northeast.

Products:

Corn, sorghum, millet, wheat, potatoes, rice, soybeans, peanuts, rape, sesame, mushrooms, cotton, ambary hemp, silk cocoons; tobacco; chestnuts, apricots, grapes, walnuts, dates, persimmons, pears; iron, coal, petroleum, salt .

Administrative divisions: 18 cities, 127 counties, and 4 autonomous counties.

Capital: Shijiazhuang.

Neighboring areas: Beijing and Tianjin Municipalities; Shandong, Henan, Shanxi, and Liaoning Provinces; Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region.

Major cities: Shijiazhuang, Tangshan, Handan, Zhangjiakou, Chengde, Qinhuangdao, Baoding.

Tourist attractions:

Shanhaiguan, the eastern pass of the Great Wall, the imperial summer residence in Chengde, the seaside resort of Beidaihe.

Elevation extremes:

The topography of Hebei Province is composed of three major geomorphic features, of which the average height of the Bashang highland is 1,200-1,500 meters above sea level, making up 8.5% of the total area; meanwhile, Mt. Yanshan and Mt. Taihangshan, including hilly land and basins, mostly lie within an elevation below 2,000 meters, accounting for 48.1% of the total area. The Hebei Plain is part of the North China Plain, with an elevation mostly below 50 meters, accounting for 43.4% of the total provincial area.

Climate:

The province lies in the temperate zone, with a continental monsoon climate. In most areas, the change of season is distinct, with yearly sunshine averaging 2,500C3,100 hours. The annual frost-free period lasts about 120 to 200 days; annual rainfall averages 300 to 800 mm. The monthly mean temperatures is 3 or below. The mean temperatures in July are 18 to 27, with a clear-cut change of seasons.

Water resources:

The province has a coastline extending 487.3 km, covering a total area of 1 million hectares. With this natural condition, the province can develop such industries as offshore petroleum oil drilling, marine chemical, marine transportation, and marine tourism. Qinhuangdao is a well-known ice-free port in north China. The Yellow River, Haihe River, and Luanhe River run across the province, where an offshore aquatic breeding industry can readily be developed.

Mineral resources:

So far, a total of 116 varieties of mineral ores have been discovered, which the deposits of 74 have been surveyed. There are 45 mines whose reserves are among the national top 10. The province boasts two large coalmines at Kailuan and Fengfeng in addition to the North China oil field.

Biological resources:

In the province, there are more than 3,000 species of plants, of which more than 140 are fiber plants, more than 1,000 are medicinal herbs and plants, and more than 100 are timbers. There are 300 or more kinds of forage grass, 140 kinds of oily plants, and more than 450 varieties of cultivated plants. Of them, the output of cotton makes up one-seventh of the nation's total and that of maize and fruits makes one-tenth of the nation's total respectively. There are 215 varieties of farming products in 12 major categories that can be listed as brand name and best products, or native or rare products. There are more than 20 varieties of medicinal herbs and materials for export.

Tourism resources:

The province is the only one in the country that boasts highlands, mountainous and hilly areas, plains, lakes and a coastline. Across the province, there are 304 ancient ruins and groups of ancient buildings including 58 key relics under state protection. The number of historical and cultural relics in the province ranks first in the country along with Shaanxi Province. The total number of natural and human cultural scenic sites ranks second nationally. They include the Chengde Summer Resort, Shanhaiguan Pass at the head of the Great Wall, Beidaihe holiday resort, the Eastern and Western Tombs of the emperors of the Qing Dynasty.