Red boat on Nanhu Lake in Jiaxing, Zhejiang province [Photo by Sheng Jiansheng]
Jiaxing, in East China's Zhejiang province, is the birthplace of the Communist Party of China and the "Red Boat Spirit", the origin of China's revolutionary spirit. In 1921, the first CPC National Congress was successfully held on a small boat on Nanhu Lake in Jiaxing, signifying the birth of the CPC.
The city faces the sea in the east, runs along the Qiantang River in the south, and bears on Taihu Lake in the north. The Grand Canal crosses the region. With Shanghai to the east, Suzhou to the north, Huzhou to the west and Hangzhou to the south, Jiaxing enjoys a favorable geographical position because it is less than 100 kilometers to any of these cities. Its network of highways, rail lines and waterways radiates in every direction.
Jiaxing is a typical water town in the south of the Yangtze River. [Photo by Xu Huajun]
Jiaxing was the cradle of the Majiabang Culture of the Neolithic Age. During the Spring and Autumn Period (770-476 BC), its general area was called Changshui, as well as Zuili, and was where the two states Wu and Yue contended for hegemony. During the Warring States Period (475-221 BC), it was included in the Chu State. It established Youquan county and Haiyan county in the Qin Dynasty (221-206 BC), both subordinate to Kuaiji county. It had become famous for salt and grains by the times of the Western Han and Eastern Han dynasties (206 BC-220). During the period of the Three Kingdoms (220-280), when the Wu State ruled in the eastern part of the Yangtze River, the southern part of Youquan county and the western part of Haiyan county were separately merged into Yanguan county. In 231, Sun Quan, the emperor of the Wu State renamed Youquan as Hexing, literarily meaning flourishing crops, and it was renamed Jiaxing, meaning auspicious and flourishing, in 242. During the period of Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms (907-960), the Wu State set up Kaiyuan city, governing the three counties of Jiaxing, Haiyan, and Huating, with Jiaxing to be designated a city-level regime for the first time.
Jiaxing has a profound culture. It has a history of 7,000 years of human civilization and 2,500 years of written records, and has been a city since 1780. Celebrities and talents have flown out like a flood. Since the Qin and Han dynasties (221-8 BC), history books of all dynasties recorded the achievements of Jiaxing people. There are more than 80 people from Jiaxing listed in the Encyclopedia of China, such as poets Liu Yuxi and Xu Zhimo, painter Wu Zhen, mathematicians Li Shanlan and Shiing Shen Chern, translator Zhu Shenghao and writer Mao Dun.
Jiaxing has jurisdiction over 4,275.05 square kilometers. Under its jurisdiction are two districts Nanhu and Xiuzhou, three county-level cities Pinghu, Haining and Tongxiang, and the two counties of Jiashan and Haiyan.
The permanent population of Jiaxing was up to 4.8 million at the end of 2019, among which the urban population reached 3.23 million.
Since 2018 Jiaxing has focused on high quality and integration development to become a high-level urban platform, optimize and upgrade its economic structure, and steadily increase its industrial base including services. The city's gross domestic product (GDP) in 2019 was 537.03 billion yuan ($76.23 billion), an increase of seven percent over the previous year. The city's total fiscal revenue was 94.54 billion yuan, a growth of 5.6 percent over the previous year, including 56.57 billion yuan in the general public budget, up by 9.1 percent.
(updated in April 2020)