Overview of Qingdao
Qingdao is a coastal city (35°35'N to 37°09’N, and 119°30'E to 121°00'E) located in the southern part of the Shandong Peninsula on the shore of the Yellow Sea and the west bank of Pacific Ocean. In the east, it faces South Korea and Japan across the sea.
A sub-provincial city with an independent planning status under the national economic and social development plan, Qingdao governs seven districts including Shinan, Shibei, Licang, Laoshan, Huangdao, Chengyang and Jimo, and three county-level cities including Jiaozhou, Pingdu and Laixi, with permanent residents totaling 9.3 million. It has a land area of 11,282 square kilometers and a sea area of 12,240 square kilometers.
China’s base leveling origin atop Guanxiang (“Astronomical Observatory”) Hill in Qingdao, set up in October 1954, is the starting point of China’s elevation system.
Qingdao is a hilly coastal city featuring zigzagging coastlines and alternating capes and bays, with Laoshan Mountain in the east, Big and Small Zhushan Hills and Tiejue Mountain in the west, Daze Mountain in the north, and Jiaolai Plain in central Qingdao. Besides, the city has three river systems including Dagu River, North Jiaolai River and rivers in coastal areas, as well as three bay clusters including Jiaozhou Bay, Aoshan Bay and Lingshan Bay. In addition, Qingdao has 49 bays, 120 islands and a coastline of 817 kilometers, accounting for a quarter of the total shoreline of Shandong Province.
Qingdao enjoys a semi-humid temperate monsoon climate, with abundant rainfalls. Here, the winter is not chilly and the summer is not scorching. The weather is particularly pleasant from late spring to early summer, when sea fogs occur frequently. The coastal areas of Qingdao feature a spring that arrives late, a comparatively cool summer, a cool autumn, and a long winter.
The official city tree of Qingdao is the cedar, and its city flowers are the common camellia and the Chinese rose.
A Coastal Open City
Qingdao is a major coastal open city in eastern China. It has established economic and trade ties with over 130 countries and regions worldwide, and built sister-city relationships with 69 overseas cities. It has also established international economic partnerships with 76 cities globally, and set up seven industrial and commercial centers abroad. Japan, South Korea and Thailand established their consulates general in Qingdao. Over 2,100 foreign local governments and enterprises have set up standing administrative bodies in Qingdao, and 137 of the Global Top 500 Companies have invested in 267 projects here.
A Major Coastal Central City
A key hub along the economic corridor of the New Eurasian Continental Bridge and a strategic pivot for marine cooperation, Qingdao is a comprehensive pivotal city that faces Japan and South Korea, radiates to Southeast Asia and connects to Central Asia and Europe under the Belt and Road Initiative. It has six nation-level economic zones and is one of the top 10 cities with the most favorable business environment on the Chinese mainland. In 2017, its GDP exceeded 1.1 trillion yuan and its international trade volume reached US$115 billion.
An International Port City
An important international trade harbor and marine transportation hub on the west bank of Pacific Ocean, Qingdao has conducted trade interactions with more than 700 ports in over 180 countries and regions worldwide. It is China’s second biggest foreign cargo trade port and the world’s seventh largest harbor. The Qingdao Airport now operates 186 regular flight routes linking to 81 domestic cities, and eight intercontinental flight routes linking to 25 cities abroad. There are five international freight train lines connecting Qingdao to Central and West Asia, Europe, Mongolia, South Korea and the ASEAN region, respectively.
A Cradle for Marine Science and Technology
A city renowned for marine science and technology, Qingdao is home to 20% of China’s marine research institutions, 30% of Chinese academicians in the field of marine sciences, and 33% of the country’s high-end marine R&D platforms. Such national innovation platforms as the National Laboratory for Marine Science and Technology, the National Marine Gene Bank and the China National Deep Sea Center have settled in Qingdao. The city is also a major base for marine education, marine scientific and technological researches, and transactions of marine research results in China. Marine industries contribute a quarter of Qingdao’s GDP.
A Financial Management Center
A national pilot zone for integrated financial reform in terms of wealth management, Qingdao has been incorporated into the action plan for the implementation of China’s national financial strategy as the country’s only wealth management-themed financial reform zone. So far, hundreds of financial institutions have settled in the Jinjialing Financial Core Area in Laoshan District, Qingdao, which aims to become “Qingdao’s Lujiazui” (a famous financial district of Shanghai). Qingdao ranks among the top 50 global financial centers. It is estimated that the city will form a core framework of internationalized wealth management by 2020.
A Home of Chinese Brands
Qingdao has long enjoyed the reputation as the “home of Chinese brands.” A number of world-renowned Chinese enterprises, including Haier, Hisense, Tsingtao Brewery, Doublestar, and CRRC Qingdao Sifang Co., Ltd., are headquartered in Qingdao, and the refrigerators, TV sets, beer and high-speed trains they produced are sold throughout the world. Tsingtao Brewery contributes more than 80% of China’s exported beer, CRRC Qingdao Sifang Co., Ltd. produces half of the country’s high-speed trains, and Haier tops the list of the most valuable Chinese brands.
A Seaside Tourist and Holiday Destination
A hilly seaside city, Qingdao boasts picturesque landscapes featuring red-roofed villas, lush vegetation, beautiful sea views and blue skies. Buildings with myriad exotic architectural styles are scattered along its zigzagging coastlines. The Badaguan architectural complex is hailed as the “most beautiful urban district in China.” Dubbed the “No.1 Famous Mountain on the Sea” and “Millennium-old Sacred Mountain for Taoism,” Laoshan Mountain has been cited as a national 5A tourist resort. A place integrating mountains, sea views and cityscapes, Qingdao has been listed by the United Nations among the world’s most livable cities, and Qingdao Bay has been cited as the most beautiful bay on the planet. Qingdao is also home to China Cruise Tourism Development Experimental Zone. The Qingdao Cruise Homeport has three berths with a capacity for handling ultra-large cruise liners around the clock. Each year Qingdao receives 88 million tourists from both home and abroad.
A Host City of the Olympic Games
Qingdao was chosen to host sailing events for the 29th Olympics and the 13th Paralympics in 2008. Moreover, it has consecutively hosted the world’s premier sailing competitions such as the Volvo Ocean Race, the Clipper Roud the World Yacht Race, the Extreme Sailing Series, and the ISAF Sailing World Cup. Qingdao is dubbed as the “sailing capital of China” and the “best sailing city of Asia.”
A Brand MICE City
Qingdao is one of China’s Top 10 Brand MICE Cities and has three professional conference and exhibition centers and over 120 luxury star-rated hotels. Each year, it hosts more than 300 exhibitions, conferences and galas including the Qingdao International Beer Festival, the China Fisheries & Seafood Expo, the China International Consumer Electronics Show, and the China (Qingdao) International Boat Show.
A National City of Historical and Cultural Significance
Qingdao has been titled as a National Civilized City for several consecutive years. Dubbed a “National City of Historical and Cultural Significance” and the “Capital of East Asian Culture,” it is the first Chinese city to produce violins and screen and make movies. The city is home to the Oriental Movie Metropolis, a film and television industry base with the largest investment of the world. Qingdao is reputed as a “natural studio,” and at least 100 films and television shows are shot and produced here every year. A city born for movie production, Qingdao was designated by UNESCO as a City of Film, becoming the first Chinese city to win the title.
The new era has bestowed new missions on Qingdao. Riding the tide of the times, the city has set its sight on realizing new goals by implementing new measures, grasping new opportunities and addressing new challenges. While adhering to the goal to take the lead in development, constantly placing priority on innovation and following the development philosophy of putting the people first, Qingdao has been striving to build itself into a more vigorous, fashionable and beautiful city with distinctive charm.
Hospitable and friendly Qingdao people welcome guests from both home and abroad to their hometown for recreational travel, sightseeing, business trips, investment, economic and trade cooperation, and even settling down and running businesses.