Home to Taoism, one of the two pillars of traditional Chinese culture;The birthplace of typography, one of the Four Great Inventions of ancient China;The Cradle of Anhui Opera, a major source of Peking Opera, the quintessential national opera;And the origin of China’s rural reform.
This is Anhui, China.
Anhui Province, located in the east of central China region, was officially set up in 1667, the sixth year into Kangxi Emperor’s reign, Qing Dynasty. It was named after the first Chinese characters of two prefectures, i.e., Anqing and Huizhou. Anhui is also called Wan for short because of Mt. Wan in its territory and the ancient Wan Kingdom during the Spring & Autumn Period. With a total size at approximately 140,000 sq. km., Anhui has 16 prefecture-level cities, 105 counties (or county-level cities/ urban districts) under its jurisdiction. As at the end of 2017, Anhui was populated by about 70.59 million residents.
This is a land with a great depth of historical and cultural legacy.
Anhui has historically been an important stage for the evolving Chinese civilization. Over 4,000 years ago, Yu the Great convened an ensemble of vassals and feudal princes at Mt. Tu following his successful control of rivers to forge an alliance, laying the foundation for the establishment of Xia, the first dynasty in Chinese history. Over 2,500 years ago, the Quepi Lake, billed as a “living fossil of China’s water conservancy history”, was built during the boom of Chu culture originated in Shou County.
Huai River culture and Hui culture added brilliant chapters to Chinese civilization. Jian’an Literature, Tongcheng School of Literature and Xin’an culture all had wide reach in different periods of time. Studies of Huizhou represent one of the three major local studies in China (alongside studies of Dunhuang Caves and Tibet).
Ancient villages in southern Anhui represented by Xidi and Hongcun, listed World Cultural Heritage, are reputed as the “World's Best-preserved Ancient Residential Complexes” and the “World’s Most Beautiful Villages”.Tofu, or bean curd, a classic Chinese food, and four treasures of the study, i.e., Xuan brushes, Hui Ink Stick, Xuan Paper and She Inkstand, all find their origin in Anhui. Huangmei Opera, a local genre of opera in Anhui, is hailed as “China's country music”.
This is an endowed land that has nurtured generations of men of talent.
Anhui is the birthplace of a galaxy of well-known people, including Laotse, a great philosopher in pre-Qin period and dubbed one of the most influential Chinese philosophers to human thought; Bi Sheng, a Chinese artisan living during the Northern Song Dynasty who invented typography, a quantum leap in printing technology; Hua Tuo, a legendary physician of the Eastern Han Dynasty and “Father of Chinese Surgery” who was the first person to use anesthetics in the world; Bao Zheng, a household name in China admired as a virtuous official of the Northern Song Dynasty; Deng Jiaxian, a famous Chinese scientist dubbed as “Founding Father of China's A- and H-bombs”; and Chen-Ning Frank Yang, a famous Nobel laureate.
This is a land of plenty with graceful natural beauty.
Yangtze River and Huai River, two great Chinese rivers, run through Anhui, dividing it into three natural areas, i.e.,the area north of Huai River (an endless stretch of flatlands), the area flanked by Yangtze and Huai rivers (continuous undulating hills) and the area south of Yangtze River (peak-studded mountains). The mountainous southern Anhui is a natural oxygen bar, with its negative ions per cubic centimeter (ions/cm3) in the air more than 30 times higher than the WHO fresh air standard.
Mt. Huangshan, named after the Yellow Emperor and billed as the “No. 1 Mountain under Heaven”, is a UNESCO World Heritage (both cultural and natural) site and World Geo-park all at once. It is a key showcase of beautiful China. Mt. Jiuhua, Mt. Qiyun and Mt. Tianzhu, all representative religious cultural and natural sites, enjoy international fame. Lake Chao, located in Hefei, the provincial capital, is one of the five major Chinese freshwater lakes. Anhui also boasts Lake Taiping, dubbed a “jadeite at the foot of Mt. Huang” and Xin’an River, billed as a “landscape gallery”.
This is a fertile, vibrant land with a diversity of varieties and resources.
Blessed with unique natural conditions, Anhui is home to diverse resources. The yields of grain, cotton, and oil all rank at the top nationwide. Local specialties including tea leaves, medicinal herbs, and fruit are internationally known. Anhui produces four of the Top 10 Chinese Teas, i.e., Huangshan Maofeng, Keemun (or Qimen) Black Tea,Taiping Houkui, and Lu’an Guapian. Dendrobium huoshanense, or Huoshan Shihu, grown in Dabie Mountains of western Anhui, is named as head of the nine major Chinese herbs. In addition, Anhui boasts rich mineral resources,with 160 minerals (including sub-minerals) already discovered. Particularly, the preserved reserves of coal, iron,copper and pyrite rank among the top nationwide.
Today, built on its brilliant historical and cultural heritage, Anhui is writing new fascinating chapters of dynamic growth.
During the 12th Five-Year Plan period, Anhui saw its economy grow at 10.8% per year, three percentage points above national average and ranking at the first among central China provinces, and the industrial value added of enterprises above the designated size record at 14.1%, again the highest in central China.In 2017, Anhui recorded growth rates of key economic indicators above national average and ranked at the top in central China: provincial GDP at RMB2,751.87 billion, an 8.5% growth; fiscal revenue at RMB485.8 billion, an 11.1% growth; the growth of industrial value added of enterprises above the designated size at 9% (with that of hi-tech sector at 14.8%); fixed asset investment at RMB2,918.6 billion, an 11% growth; total retail sales of consumer goods at RMB1,119.26 billion, an 11.9% growth; and total imports and exports at RMB363.16 billion, a 23.7% growth.
Over years of development, Anhui has established an industrial system covering a wide range of fields and with strong supporting capacity. Most of the Forbes 500 companies can find sound industrial bases here. Businesses in varying industries can find ideal counterparts and partners in Anhui.
Charming Anhui is set to shine brilliantly!