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Governor: Zhou Bohua

Capital: Changsha

Government office address: Wuyi Zhonglu, Changsha

Tel: 0731-221 7781

Postcode: 410000


Geographic location

Hunan, abbreviated as "Xiang", lies at 108°47' to 114°45' east longitude, and 24°39' to 30°28' north latitude; it is 667 km wide and 774 km long. As an inland province adjacent to the coastal areas, Hunan has an area of 211,800 sq km, 2.2% of the national total, ranking 11th largest in China.
Hunan 2004 - The Year in Review

General Economy

Gross domestic product (GDP)

GDP for 2004 was 561.226 billion yuan, up 12.0% from the previous year.

GDP ratio (primary, secondary and tertiary industries)

The primary industry yielded a value added of 115.585 billion yuan, 7.4% more than that of the previous year; the secondary industry, 221.441 billion yuan, a growth of 16.2%; the tertiary industry, 224.2 billion yuan, a growth of 10.2%. The proportion of the three sectors is 20.6: 39.5: 39.9.


Provincial revenue was 60.8 billion yuan, an increase of 28.9% over the previous year.

Consumer price index (CPI)

CPI was 105.1, up 2.7 percentage points from the previous year.

Investment in fixed assets

Fixed asset investment was valued at 198.129 billion yuan, up by 27.3% from the previous year.

Major Industries


In 2004, the province's total grain output was 28.103 million tons, an increase of 15.0% from the previous year.


The industrial added value totaled 178.114 billion yuan, an increase of 15.9%.


The added value from high-tech industries totaled 38.833 billion yuan, up 27.9%.


Its added value was 43.327 billion yuan, up 17.6%.


Freight carried by various means of transport during the year amounted to a total of 156.599 billion ton-kilometers, 17.1% up from the previous year. Passengers carried by various means of transport numbered 98.253 billion person-kilometers during the year, up 20.2%.

Postal services

The annual turnover of postal operations totaled 1.922 billion yuan, 5.6% up from the previous year.


The annual turnover of telecom services was 23.776 billion yuan, 22.2% up from the previous year.


The annual turnover from retail sales reached 206.984 billion yuan, an increase of 14.0% from the previous year.


Revenue from tourism totaled 37.159 billion yuan, up by 26.4%.

Continued Effects of Market Reform

Imports & exports

The annual value of imports and exports totaled US$5.438 billion, an increase of 45.5% from the previous year.

Economic and technological cooperation

Overseas project and labor contracts signed during the year were valued at US$614 million, up 57.1% from the previous year. Business turnover for the year totaled US$462 million, an increase of 19.8%.

Foreign investment

Foreign direct investment realized in monetary terms was US$1.637 million while such investments in contractual value totaled US$2.826.

Urban Construction and Management

Road transport

A total of 1,330 km of highways were built during the year. By the year-end, 4,300 km of highways linking various administrative villages had been open to traffic.

Public services

The urban daily capacity of tap water supply reached 249,500 tons while the daily capacity of sewage treatment reached 552,700 tons.

Social Undertakings

Science and technology

In 2004 a total of 943 achievements in scientific research and technological development were made in the province. The total expenditure on scientific and technological activities during the year was 279 million yuan.


There are 81 institutions of higher learning in the province. The number of students enrolled in postgraduate schools and institutions of higher learning during the year stood at 10,700 and 206,800 respectively.


The province had a total of 87 professional performing organizations, 125 cultural centers, 115 public libraries, and 70 museums at the end of the year.

Public health

There were a total of 4,016 medical and healthcare institutions staffed with 233,300 medical professionals and technicians at the year-end.


At the year-end, there were all together 29,213 sports facilities in the province, including 38 stadiums, 57 gymnasiums, 1,860 playgrounds and 112 swimming pools.

Poverty relief

A special relief fund of 1.23 billion yuan was spent and lifted 212,000 people out of poverty. 2171 drinking water related projects were accomplished during the year, providing a population of 246,700 with easier access to drinking water. 141 township hospitals were set up in poor areas.

Population, Employment, Social Security and Living Standards


The birth rate in 2004 was 11.89‰, while the mortality rate was 6.80‰. The natural growth rate of the population stood at 5.09‰. At the end of the year, the total population stood at 66.977 million.


The employed population stood at 37.471 million at the end of 2004, an increase of 523,200 from the previous year-end. A total of 398,200 laid-off workers got reemployed during the year.

Registered unemployment rate

The registered urban unemployment rate was 4.4%.

Social security

In 2004, insurance plans for endowments, unemployment and medical treatment covered a population of 6.926 million, 3.8 million and 4.75 million respectively. These figures are respectively 8.9%, 9.4% and 12.2% up from the year before. A total of 1.356 million people received minimum living allowances from the government.

Residents' income

The disposable income of urban residents was 8,617 yuan per capita, up 7.9% from 2003. Rural residents' per capita net income was 2,838 yuan, a growth of 8.0% from the previous year.

Residents' consumption

Urban residents' per capita expenditure was 6,885 yuan, up 13.2% from the previous year while that of rural residents was 2,472 yuan, up 15.6%.

Geography and Natural Conditions

Elevation extremes

The land in Hunan generally slopes from the east, south and west towards the north like the shape of a horse's hoof. Hunan is surrounded with mountains on three sides: Mufu and Luoxiao mountains in the east, Nanling Mountain in the south, and Wuling and Xuefeng mountain in the west. The northern part of the province is the Dongting Lake Plain, and central Hunan has wide areas of low hills, basins and valleys.

Among the total area of Hunan, mountainous regions account for 51.2%, while basins, plains and hilly areas account for 13.9%, 13.1% and 15.4% respectively. Areas below 50 meters altitude form 9.9% of the total, while areas above 1,000 meters account for 4.3%. The majority of Hunan Province lies at altitudes between 100 meters and 800 meters.


Hunan has a humid continental and subtropical monsoon climate. It has average annual sunshine of 1,300-1,800 hours, annual average temperature is 16°C-18°C, a frost-free period of 260-310 days, and a mean annual precipitation of 1,200-1,700 mm.

Its climate has three characteristics: first, it has abundant sunshine, heat and water resources, and they reach their peak synchronously. During the period from April to October, the total radiation amount is 70-76% of the whole year, and rainfall accounts for 68-84% of the total. Second, there are distinct seasonal climate changes, with a cold winter and hot summer. The temperature always changes in spring, but always declines abruptly in the autumn. There is much rainfall in spring and summer, while drought always appears in autumn and winter. Third, areas with an abruptly changeable climate are surrounded by mountains in three directions, especially in the mountainous regions in west and south Hunan.

Natural resources

Hunan has a total cultivated area of 3.92 million hectares, 18.5% of the province's total area. Forest areas, 9.47 million hectares, account for 44.7%; deserted hilly areas where forestation is possible total 159,400 hectares, 0.8% of the total; the freshwater area is 1.353 million hectares, accounting for 6.4%. Over half of the soil in the province is red or yellow earth. Nearly 20% of the cultivated areas are suitable for paddy planting.

Water resources:
The province has a complete water system. Dongting Lake in northern Hunan, the second largest fresh water lake in China, has a water area of 2,691 sq km. It takes the waters of the Xiangjiang River, Zishui River, Yuanjiang River and Lishui River from the southwest, and then flows into the Yangtze River at Chenglingji.

Xiangjiang River, Zishui River, Yuanjiang River and Lishui River have a total waterway length of 2,200 km in Hunan, with nearly 5,000 tributaries.

There are more than 5,341 rivers over 5 km in length, totaling 90,000 km, with annual runoff of 200.43 billion cubic meters. The total surface water and total underground water are 175.92 billion cubic meters and 43.85 billion cubic meters respectively. The total water storage in large reservoirs was 12.1 billion cubic meters at the end of 2004.

Hunan has various and abundant minerals. Of the over 140 kinds of minerals found nationwide, 111 kinds are found in the province; at least 83 of these are currently exploitable. The year 2004 witnessed the discovery of 11 new mines with proven reserves.

The province is known as the "hometown of nonferrous metals", with the presence of 37 types confirmed among them. Deposits of stibium rank largest in the world, while deposits of tungsten, bismuth and monazite rank first in China. There is also abundant lead and zinc.

Non-metallic minerals are the second largest group of resources. Deposits of jade-like stone, barite, feldspar and meerschaum, etc. are the largest in the country. Hunan has another 30-plus minerals like limestone, silica, dolomite, pyrite and phosphorite. Coal deposits rank first among the nine provinces in south China.

The energy sector in Hunan includes production of coal, crude oil processing and power construction. Currently, coal deposits totaling 3.4 billion tons have been confirmed. Oil is still under exploration, but Hunan has large-scale crude oil processing enterprises.

The province has a potential hydropower capability of 15.32 million kw, of which 10.84 million kw can now be exploited. Currently, some large hydropower generating plants like Fengtan, Dongjiang and Wuqiangxi have been set up. By 1998, the installed capacity had reached 5.1 million kw. After continuous construction and extension, the installed capacity of thermal power reached 4.82 million kw by the end of 1998. Several more hydropower generating plants and thermal power plants will be set up by 2010. Besides, Hunan is preparing for the establishment of nuclear power plants. Hunan's electricity network now covers 90% of the province.

Biological resources:
Hunan has a variety of animals and wide range of distribution. Incomplete statistics show that the province has 70 kinds of mammals, 310 kinds of birds, over 70 kinds of creeping animals and over 160 kinds of fish. It has 44 rare and state-protected animals. Eighteen kinds of rare animals are under Class A protection, like the white-flag dolphin, South China tiger. Nineteen kinds of animals, like the macaque and short-tail monkey, are under Class B protection. The third category of protected animals includes seven species, such as bear.

Hunan, lying in a sub-tropical area, has a mild climate and flourishing plants. Forest cover totals 34.3%, and land used for forestry accounts for 57.4% of the province's total area. As an important timber base in South China, Hunan currently has 2,470 kinds of woody plants, with a total accumulated volume of 184 million cubic meters and annual growth of 11 million cubic meters.

In addition, it has abundant grassland resources.

Tourism resources

Hunan has lots of elegant landscapes and numerous historic sites. It now has over 20,000 cultural remains, including 22 national-level key protection units and 211 provincial-level key protection units. The province has four state-class natural reserves, 22 provincial-class natural reserves and 21 national forest parks. The total area of nature reserves is 7,260 sq km, 3.43% of the province's total.

Hunan has developed 43 scenic areas. There are three national-level key scenic areas covering Mount Hengshan, WulinYuan, Yueyang Tower, Dongting Lake and Shaoshan, and 27 provincial–class scenic areas.

WulingYuan tourist area (including Zhangjiajie, Suoxi Valley and Tianzi Mountain and Mengdong River), with its unique physiognomy, limestone caves, brooks, hot springs, ancient trees and rare animals, has been placed by United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on the World Natural Heritage List. Mount Hengshan is the famous sacred mountain of Buddhism and a summer resort. Yueyang Tower is also well known at home and abroad for its long history, folklore and grand architecture. Changsha, the provincial capital, is a historic and cultural city. Tourist sites there include Han Dynasty Tombs at Mawangdui, Yuelu Hill, Loving Youth Pavilion (Aiwanting), Orange Isle (Juzizhou), and Yuelu Academy of Classical Learning.

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