Lying in the lower reaches of the Yellow River and the Lubei Plain, Binzhou is located at hinterland of the Yellow River Delta. Bordering the Bohai Sea to the north, Dongying to the east, Zibo to the south, Dezhou and Jinan to the west, Binzhou is Shandong’s north gate. In 1950, Huimin Region was set here which was then renamed Binzhou Region in 1992 and finally changed into Binzhou City after several reforms. Binzhou administers 7 counties and 1 districts (including Bincheng District, Huimin County, Yangxin County, Wudi County, Zhanhua County, Boxing County and Zhouping County, and 1 economic development zone), which covers an area of 9600 square kilometers and has a population of 3.69 million.
Binzhou has a long history, which can be traced back to the Neolithic Age and was regarded as one of the cradles of the Yellow River Civilization and the Qi Civilization. In the Shang Dynasty, the kingdom of Pugu was founded here. And in the Qin Dynasty, the county was set. From the Western Han Dynasty to the Republic of China, kingdom, province, prefecture, circuit and other local administrative divisions were set here. During the Five Dynasties Period, Binzhou was established, whose name was derived from the fact that it was adjacent to the Bohai Sea.
Binzhou is famous for its splendid traditional folk arts, such as, Lu Opera originating from Boxing, HuJi Assembly, clay sculpture and wood engraving in Huimin, and Binzhou’s artistic paper cutting, all of which are saturated with profound rural flavor and boast distinct artistic charm.
Binzhou is characteristic of simple folk customs and abundant personage. Hunmin County is the hometown of Sun Wu, a great ancient strategist. Zouping County is the hometown of Fan Zhongyan, a famous statesman in the Song Dynasty. Boxing County is the hometown of Dongyong, a famous dutiful son in the Han Dynasty, which is the cradle of the culture of Filial Piety. And Binzhou is the cradle of Chinese Liu Opera. During the times of war and revolution, CPC Agency in Bohai Region was situated here.
Binzhou enjoys convenient transportation. A large number of infrastructures, such as the Jiqing Highway, the Binbo Highway, the Jingbin Highway and China National Highway 205 and 220 run through Binzhou, all of which are important accesses to connect Jiangsu, Shandong, Beijing and Tianjin. The highway from Dagao to the border of Shandong and Hebei (a part of the Jinshan Highway), the highway from Xinzhuangzi to Dengwang (a part of the Weiwu Highway), the Binde Highway, the part of the Huangda railroad in Binzhou, the Highway-Railway Bridge over the Yellow River, Binzhou Dagao General Aviation Center in China, and the 10-Thousand-Tonnage Binzhou Port, are all under intensive construction.
Zhanhua Winter Jujube
Binzhou is rich in natural resources. It covers a land of 945000 hectare, among which, 467000 hectare has been cultivated, and the per caipta cultivated land is 0.13 hectare. Great stride has been made in the “North Belt” development based on sea embankment beginning at the end of 2003, and a new cultivated land of 610000 mu is created. The Yellow River runs through the city, ensuring the sufficient fresh water. There are 20 varieties of mineral resources found in Binzhou, among which, 15 varieties have been tapped. Petrol and natural gas reserves are rich, which are the main mining area of Shengli Oilfield—the second largest oilfield in China. Binzhou covers a coastline of 240 kilometer, putting it into a key raw salt production base of Shandong.
Binzhou has sound agriculture. Industries such as agriculture, forest, animal and fishing are well developed. The five 1-million-mu bases of cotton, vegetable, winter date, aquatic product and grass have been built. Wudi winter dates, Zhanhua winter dates, Huimin honey peach, Zouping apricot and Yangxin pear have distinct flavor and are popular both at home and abroad. Zhanhua County is named as the “Region of Winter Dates” and the “Origin of Place of Winter Dates” by the national government, which has become the largest production base of winter dates in China. Quality aquatic products such as Bohai clam and portunid are famous all over the world.
National Water Conservancy Scenic Spot -- Zhonghai
Binzhou’s industries are developing rapidly. Clusters of industries such as textile, home-textile and garment, salt and chemical complex, auto, engine and parts, ship building and ship part building, airplane and airplane parts building, electronic information, rice, oil, fruit and vegetable product processing, biological engineering, modern service industry and infrastructures began to take shape. The goal of “ Auto to the roads, Ship to the sea and Airplane to the sky “ has basically been realized, and the three dimensional high-tech industrial frame of land, sea and sky is being formed. Shandong Weiqiao Pioneering Group Co., Ltd. and Shandong Befar Group Co., Ltd. are listed in the China’s Top 500 Enterprises. Major economic indicators of Mengwei Manufacturing Co., Ltd. have ranked first in China for nineteen years in a row. Shandong Lubei Enterprise Group Co., Ltd is among the first batch of environmental-friendly enterprises and the first “Green Chemical Industrial Enterprise”. Now, Binzhou has 6 listed companies, raising 5.92 billion yuan of funds. Among these, 2 were listed abroad, raising 0.489billion dollar of funds and ranking first in Shandong Province.
Fan Zhongyan's former residence
The urbanization level of Binzhou has been improving. The cluster type of “one center-one leading city-southern and northern city belts” and the frame of linkage type city clusters are basically formed.
The project of “Four Round-cities and Five Waters” planned to be world-class (namely, the round-city highway, round-city river, round-city green belt, and round-city scenic belt, together with the five round-city plain reservoirs located at the eastern, western, southern, northern, and middle areas) is completed smoothly, with gardening area echoing lakes and perfect combination of industries, ecology and culture, which begins to display its eco urban features of four linking round-cities , five waters and 72 lakes. The Binzhou Economic Development Zone is speeding up, and public facilities such as roads, squares and grasslands are gradually built, which serve as an excellent auxiliary to project construction and industries.
Qin and Han Style Buildings
Modern service industry is developing rapidly. Modern Binzhou Logistics Center has taken shape, while Binzhou International Exhibition Center is completed and put to use and the Olympic Park underway. Contests and activities such as the Home-textile Festival, Water Dual Match between Chinese and American Stars, the Zhanhua Winter Dates Festival and the International Boxing Opera Festival are held successively, while the exhibition economy is flourishing. Binzhou is deepening its development over offering a trustworthy cooperative environment, which has made great achievement successively in four Bank-Enterprise Cooperation Conferences and has got 106.7 billion yuan of contracts. Meanwhile, with the project of “Four Round-cities and Five Waters” and the great Strategist Su Tzu as its labels, Binzhou vigorously integrates tourist resources and gradually forms the tourist layout of “Two Mountains (Heban Mountain and Yeshi Mountain), Two Areas (areas along the Yellow River and the sea) and One Sage(Sun Tzu)” with Binzhou features.
Over these years, Binzhou has built the strategic systems of “Nine Binzhous” (Well-off Binzhou, Open Binzhou, Eco Binzhou, Trustworthy Binzhou, Scientific and Educational Binzhou, Talents Binzhou, Civilized Binzhou, Man-oriented Binzhou and Peaceful Binzhou), freed people’s mind, and worked scientifically. All these efforts lead to the favorable economic momentum of rapid and steady development, sound benefit, robust development potential and enormous changes.
In 2008, the city’s gross production was 123 billion yuan, rising by 12.7%; the urban per capita disposable income was 15960 yuan, increasing by 14.9%; while rural farmers’ per captia income was 5700 yuan, increasing by 14.3%. The city’s gross agricultural production is 24billion yuan, increasing by 5%. Value-added of large-scale industries is 66.06 billion yuan, increasing by 13%. Great progress has been made in opening up to the outside. The total volume of imports and exports will reach 4.62 billion dollar, increasing by 37.5％; among which, the volume of export will be 2.32 billion dollar, increasing by 23.2%. And 0.3 billion dollar of foreign investment has been utilized, increasing by 19.4%.