Taiyuan, capital of Shanxi province, is located in the central part of the province. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]
Taiyuan, capital of Shanxi province, is located in the central part of the province, covering a total area of 6,989 square kilometers, of which the urban area is 1,500 sq km. There are six districts, three counties and one city under the administration of the provincial capital which had a population of 4.46 million in 2019.
The city has a cold semi-arid climate. In spring, Taiyuan is dry with occasional dust storms, followed by early summer heat waves. Most of the year's rainfall is concentrated in July and August. Winters are long and cold, but dry and sunny.
The average annual temperature is 9.5 Celsius and the average annual precipitation is 456 millimeters. The city is a major farm produce and fruit production base for wheat, rice, corn, vegetables, grapes and apples –– thanks to its climate and pristine environment.
It is a land abundant in minerals, especially coal and iron. The coal-bearing area in Taiyuan is 1,282 sq km, accounting for about one-fifth of the city's total area, and the proven reserves are 18.5 billion tons. The initial proven reserves of iron ore are 170 million tons.
Taiyuan is also an ancient city with a history dating back over 2,500 years. Throughout its long history, Taiyuan was the capital or provisional capital of many dynasties in China, hence the name "Dragon City".
There are numerous historical sites, including ruins from the Neolithic and Paleolithic eras and tombs of ancient nobles.
The city's gross domestic product totaled 415.33 billion yuan ($56.81 billion) in 2020, increasing 2.6 percent year-on-year.