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Zhejiang Province
Zhejiang is located on Chinaˇ®s southeast coast, south of the Yangtze River Delta. Adjacent to the north is Shanghai, Chinaˇ®s largest city, while a vast hinterland stretches westward. The whole province is noted for its picturesque scenery, and the abundance of its products has made it widely known as a "land of fish and rice." It is also noted for its silk and tea, as well as for its numerous historical and cultural sites of interest to scholars and tourists alike.

Zhejiang covers a total area of 101,800 sq km, of which 70.4 percent is mountainous or hilly. Plains and basins make up 23.2 percent, and rivers and lakes make up the other 6.4 percent. It also occupies a large sea area. Along the coast, there are 3,061 islands each having an area of more than 500 sq m. This brings the total coastline to 6,486 km, the longest in China. Areas under cultivation total 1.613 million ha. Land used by forestry covers 6.397 million ha. there is a combined fresh water surface area of 224,000 ha. and over 100,000 ha. of shallow sea and shoals are suitable for aquaculture. Also there is the Zhoushan fishing ground producing the biggest catches on the coastline of China.

There are 39 counties, 25 cities and 24 districts at the county level. The total population of the province is 44.56 millionm, over 300,000 of whom belong to 47ethnic minorities. She and Hui are the two biggest minority ethnic groups.

Zhejiang was one of the cradles of ancient Chinese civilization. Over 100 neolithic sites belonging to the Hemudu(c.5,000 B.C.), Majiabang(C.4,00 B.C.) and Liangzhu(c. 3,000 B.C.)cultures so far have been discovered.

In the tenth century, rapid social and economic development transformed Zhejiang into one of the richest and nost populous areas of China. It led the country in the silk, porcelain and papermaking industries. Since the Peopleˇ®s Republic of China was founded in Oct., 1949, Zhejiang has entered a new historic development period. Throughout its long history, Zhejiang has produced an unending stream of thinkers and cultural celebrities. More than 1,000 natives of the province have been inscribed on the historical roll of great literary figures, especially in this century, when Zhejiang produced the literary giants Lu Xun, Mao Dun, Xia Yan, Ai Qing, Xu Zhimo and WuHan. Besides, since the founding of the Peopleˇ®s Republic of China, nearly one fifth of the academicians of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Chinese Academy of Engineering have been natives of the province.

Following the introduction of the reform and opening-up policies, Zhejiang has made rapid strides in its economic, scientific and technological and social undertakings. From 1979 to 1998, the annual growth rate of the provinceˇ®s gross domestic product(GDP) averaged 13.5 percent, 3.8percent higher than that of the national average. At present, itˇ®s economic standing ranks fourth in China

     Photo Album of Zhejiang