This is the land,
Where Confucius the Sage was born,
Where Mount Taishan rose majestically skyward,
Where the Yellow River empties into the ocean, and
Where sailing events of the Beijing Olympia took place.
Shandong is here to welcome you with open arms!
As a province of 157.1 thousand square kilometers and 96.8487 million inhabitants, Shandong lies in the east coast of China's mainland. With capital city in Jinan, Shandong has under its jurisdiction 17 cities with 140 counties, towns and urban districts. Shandong is served by a conveniently-structured communications system. The Beijing-Shanghai Railway and Beijing-Kowloon Railway run through the province from north to south and Jinan-Qingdao Railway and Yanzhou-Shijiusuo Railway extend from west to east. The famous bullet train (CRH) can take you from Jinan to Beijing in just 100 minutes whereas to Shanghai in three and half hours. The province is famous for its crisscrossing highways with a total mileage of 4975 kilometers. A total of 8 major airports, 4 of which international in Jinan, Qingdao, Yantai and Weihai allows the province to operate commercial flights to over 30 international and domestic destinations including those in Japan, ROK, Singapore, Tailand, Hongkong and Taiwan. Shandong is also known for 26 seaports with Qingdao ranking among the five largest trading terminals in China.
Culture and Traditions
Shandong got its name during the Spring and Autumn and Warring State period (722-221BC) because of its location east of the Taihang Mountain. It was made an administrative province during the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368AD). In 1636AD it became a full province of China during the Qing Dynasty (1616-1912AD).
Shandong is one of the cradles of the Chinese culture. Taowen, the earliest Chinese written language dating back over 4000 years was found in Shandong. It is also called the land of Qi and Lu because of the two powerful dukedoms that once flourished here long time ago.
In addition to Confucius, the greatest thinker and educator in ancient China, Shandong was also home to a galaxy of extraordinary talents including thinkers Mencius, Mo-tse and Zhuang Zi, military strategists Sun Zi and Zhuge Liang, literary giants as calligrapher Wang Xizhi, writer Pu Songling and poetess Li Qingzhao and agronomist Jia Sixie.
In modern times, Shandong has brought to the fore such famous personalities as scholar Ji Xianlin, writer Mo Yan, calligrapher Ouyang Zhongshi, diplomat Li Zhaoxing .
Shandong offers wide choices for tourists with differing interests. Jinan, Mount Taishan and Qufu are rich in sights of mountains, waters and heritage relating to ancient sages. Qingdao, Yantai and Weihai are famous summer resorts with sand beaches. Weifang is the venue for the world-famous kite festival, as well as Yangjiabu woodcut New-Year paintings and shows of colorful folklores. Zibo is the center of Qi culture complete with the pit of sacrificial horses and the old residence of Pu Songling. Dongying provides the unique view of the Yellow River merging into the blue sea. Liangshan and Yanggu help you to revisit stories of the legendary "Outlaws of the Marsh". In 2012, Shandong received a total of 490 million tourists with 4.699 million from overseas.
Some of the main festivals are:
Weifang International Kite Festival and Zibo International Ceramics Expo in April
China International Household Electrical Appliances Expo in June
Qingdao International Beer Festival in August
Qufu International Confucius Cultural Festival and Mount Taishan International Mountain Climbing Festival in September
Mount Taishan is the most worshipped one among the five holy mountains in China. It used to be the place for Chinese emperors to pay homage to heaven. Thanks to breathtaking natural beauty and profound roots in history, it was double-listed by UNESCO as the World Natural Heritage and the World Cultural Heritage in 1987.
Qufu, capital of the one-time State of Lu, became famous by being the hometown of Confucius. The Confucius compound, complete with the temple, mansion and cemetery, was listed by UNESCO in 1994 as the World Cultural Heritage.
Jinan is also known as the "City of Springs" because of a large number of underground rivers with water gushing out in great quantity. Baotu Spring is the most prestigious one among the 72 popular springs and is honored as the finest spring under heaven.
Qingdao, well known for its beaches and European style buildings, now offers annual international beer festival and facilities for athletic sailing activities.
Economy and Strategic Plans
Shandong, with a GDP of 5.001.32 trillion yuan (US$820 billion)in 2012, is the third largest economy in the country.
Shandong is actively promoting the development of the Blue Economic Zone of the Shandong Peninsula and the Yellow River Delta Eco-efficient Economic Zone. Vigorous efforts are being made to advance marine economy, explore marine resources in a scientific way and to foster competitive marine industries. Featuring an eco-efficient economy, the Yellow River Delta is to be built as an eco-efficient economic demonstration zone, a unique industrial base and a reserve land resources development area.
Shandong is China's largest supplier of agricultural products. Along with food grain, cotton, oil crops, fruit and aquatics that are produced in great quantities, Shandong wins nationwide fame for its "three treasures": donkey-hide gelatin, sea kelp and sea cucumber.
Shandong's industry includes such pillar sectors as energy, chemical, metallurgy, construction material, machinery, electronics, textile, foodstuff and in recent years, new energy, new materials, new IT, new pharmaceuticals and marine resources development.
Shandong, with such energy giants as Sinopec Shengli and Shandong Energy Group, is a principal supplier of coal and crude oil in China.
The province has 137 institutions of higher learning and 560 secondary vocational schools as it pursues a strategy of promoting a stronger Shandong through education, science and development of human talent. 40381 patent applications have been filed with 7454 of them approved.
Shandong has undergone a vibrant development of cultural facilities resulting in 200 museums, 153 public libraries, 9 state-level cultural demonstration bases, and its radio and television program coverage has reached 98.13% and 97.92% respectively. Acrobatics in Shandong is both age-old and world-renowned.
Health care in Shandong is improving steadily thanks to a network of 68 thousand service providers with 476 thousand beds combined.
The improving economic strength has boosted the development of sports. Athletic events and popular sports of Shandong are taking the lead in the country. The Third Asian Beach Games, one of the five largest sports events in Asia, was held in Haiyang County.
As one of the first provinces that came to benefit from China's opening-up policy, Shandong has over time brought Qingdao, Yantai, Weihai, Zibo, Weifang, Rizhao, Jinan and Dongying into its Peninsular Economic Open Zone. It enjoys thriving trade relations with over 180 countries and regions around the world. In 2012, Shandong reported a total foreign trade volume of US$245.54 billion with US$116.81 billion in import and US$128.73 billion in export.
Shandong endeavors to improve its investment environment. With the 2012 FDI figure standing at US$12.35 billion, Shandong has attracted a total of US$125.16 billion of overseas capital since the beginning of reform and opening up 34 years ago. At present, 184 enterprises out of the Fortune 500 have made investment in Shandong. Eager to "go global", the number of Shandong-based enterprises making overseas investment has increased to 2386.
Shandong works to make more friends far and near. At present, the province has cultivated 368 sister-city relationships with foreign countries including 63 pairs at the provincial level in over 66 countries.
Shandong is the ancestral home to over one million overseas Chinese, most of whom reside in ROK, US, Japan, Russia, India, Singapore, Indonesia and others.