Big data of Population of Cities in China: 91 Cities Exceed 5 Million People, Shandong Has the Largest Number

China, the country which most population in the world, has 91 cities exceed 5 million people.
Big data of Population of Cities in China: 91 Cities Exceed 5 Million People, Shandong Has the Largest Number
Population of Cities in China

There are at least 15 countries and areas with the total population less than 5 million. But China, the country which most population in the world, has 91 cities exceed 5 million people. Let’s check the details of population of cities in China.

With the improvement of comprehensive transportation system and industrial upgrading and transformation, the population scale of central cities and big cities is also changing.

Generally speaking, cities with a population of more than 5 million are large cities. According to the data from the seventh national census, 91 cities have a population of more than 5 million in 2020. Of the 91 cities, 70 increased in population over the past decade. In terms of provincial distribution, Shandong has the most cities with 10, followed by Henan and Guangdong with 9 each.

Population of Cities in China: 91 cities has a population of over 5 million

In 2020, there were 91 cities with a population of more than 5 million, including 18 cities with a permanent resident population of more than 10 million, namely Chongqing, Shanghai, Beijing, Chengdu, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Tianjin, Xi’an, Suzhou, Zhengzhou, Wuhan, Hangzhou, Linyi, Shijiazhuang, Dongguan, Qingdao, Changsha and Harbin.

Compared with 2010, 8 of them are new members of cities with a population of 10 million, namely Wuhan, Shijiazhuang, Qingdao, Hangzhou, Zhengzhou, Xi’an, Dongguan and Changsha. Of these 8 cities, 6 are provincial capitals. In the past decade, driven by the strategy of strengthening provincial capitals, the population of several provincial capitals has imcresed rapidly. In terms of ten-year increment, the increment of Xi’an, Zhengzhou, Hangzhou and Changsha has exceeded 3 million, and the ten-year increase is also among the top.

Take Changsha as an example. In the past decade, Changsha has increased by 3 million people, with a total population of 10 million, reaching 10.0479 million. It has become the third provincial capital city in Central China to break through the 10 million population mark, and the other two provincial capital cities with a population of 10 million are Wuhan and Zhengzhou.

In the central region, while the population of some provincial capitals is growing rapidly, the population of many cities in the province has decreased. Taking Hunan as an example, except Changsha, the population growth of other cities is slow, even significantly reduced. The population of Shaoyang, Hengyang, Yiyang, Changde and Yueyang decreased significantly. Among them, there were 508,000 fewer people in Shaoyang and 496,000 fewer in Hengyang than in 2010. In addition to the population transfer to developed areas, it is accelerating that people of those cities transfer to provincial capitals in recent years.

Ms. Xiao from Shaoyang, worked in a real estate company in Changsha. She said that after the opening of the high-speed railway, it was only about an hour from Shaoyang to Changsha. “The convenience of transportation has also brought changes in consumption. Many people are willing to come to Changsha for further development.”

According to the population changing data of 91 cities in the past decade, the population of 70 cities has increased, with a growth rate of 77%. In terms of increment, there are 15 cities with a population increment of more than 2 million in the past 10 years, all of which are first and second tier cities, including 9 provincial capitals, 2 municipalities directly under the central government, 1 city specifically designated in the state plan and 3 cities with developed manufacturing industry.

In comparation, the population of 10 of the 91 cities has decreased by more than 400,000, namely Nanchong, Harbin, Yancheng, Nanyang, Shaoyang, Hengyang, Jingzhou, Changde, Yueyang and Yichun. In terms of regional distribution, the central region is very dense, takes as many as 7 cities.

Why does the population of those cities in Central China decrease? Ye Qing, a professor of Zhongnan University of Economics and Law, analyzed to WentChina. The central region is closer to the Yangtze River Delta, the Zhujiang River Delta and Beijing Tianjin Hebei area. In recent years, the construction of high-speed rail network has further shortened the space-time distance. In addition, with the rapid development of several strong provincial capitals in Central China in recent years, there are many employment opportunities, and the population of many cities flows to provincial capitals.

For example, the Wuhan-Guangzhou high-speed railway opened at the end of 2009 has greatly improved the convenience of the Hubei, Hunan region to the Zhujiang River Delta. A considerable part of the college graduates from Wuhan and Changsha have gone to the Zhujiang River Delta.

Population of Cities in China: name list of the 91 cities

CityPopulation of year 2020 (in million)Province and RankingPopulation of year 2010 (in million)Population changing in 10 years (in million)Ten year growth
Shenzhen17.56Guangdong 210.42357.136568.5%
Guangzhou18.6766Guangdong 112.70085.975847.1%
Chengdu20.938Sichuan 115.11915.818938.5%
Xi’an12.9529Shaanxi 18.46784.485153.0%
Zhengzhou12.6006Henan 18.62653.974146.1%
Hangzhou11.936Zhejiang 18.70043.235637.2%
Changsha10.0479Hunan 17.04413.003842.6%
Wuhan12.3265Hubei 19.78542.541126.0%
Foshan9.4989Guangdong 47.19432.304632.0%
Suzhou12.7483Jiangsu 110.4662.282321.8%
Dongguan10.4666Guangdong 38.22022.246427.3%
Nanning8.7416Guangxi 16.66162.0831.2%
Kunming8.46Yunnan 16.4322.02831.5%
Hefei9.3699Anhui 17.4571.912925.7%
Ningbo9.4043Zhejiang 37.60571.798623.7%
Jinhua7.0507Zhejiang 45.36161.689131.5%
Guiyang5.987Guizhou 34.32451.662538.4%
Xiamen5.164Fujian 33.53131.632646.2%
Huizhou6.0429Guangdong 74.5971.445931.5%
Changchun9.0669Jilin 17.67441.392518.1%
Qingdao10.0717Shandong 28.71511.356615.6%
Nanjing9.3147Jiangsu 28.00471.3116.4%
Nanchang6.255Jiangxi 35.04261.212424.0%
Fuzhou8.2913Fujian 27.11541.175916.5%
Langfang5.4641Hebei 74.36211.105225.3%
Taiyuan5.3041Shanxi 14.20161.102526.2%
Shijiazhuang10.6405Hebei 19.54791.092611.4%
Jinan9.2024Shandong 48.11251.089913.4%
Wuxi7.4621Jiangsu 56.37261.089517.1%
Linyi11.0183Shandong 110.03940.97899.8%
Shenyang9.0278Liaoning 18.10620.921611.4%
Jiaxing5.4009Zhejiang 64.50170.899220.0%
Dalian7.4508Liaoning 26.69040.760411.4%
Changzhou5.2781Jiangsu 74.59240.685714.9%
Taizhou6.6229Zhejiang 55.96880.654111.0%
Quanzhou8.7823Fujian 18.12850.65388.0%
Ganzhou8.97Jiangxi 18.36840.60167.2%
Fuyang8.2003Anhui 27.59990.60047.9%
Xinxiang6.2519Henan 75.70780.54419.5%
Heze8.7959Shandong 58.28770.50826.1%
Luoyang7.0567Henan 56.54950.50727.7%
Xuzhou9.0837Jiangsu 38.57720.50655.9%
Zunyi6.6067Guizhou 26.12710.47967.8%
Shangqiu7.8168Henan 47.36250.45436.2%
Wenzhou9.5729Zhejiang 29.12210.45084.9%
Nantong7.7236Jiangsu 47.28360.446.0%
Bijie6.8996Guizhou 16.53750.36215.5%
Shaoxing5.271Zhejiang 74.91220.35887.3%
Maoming6.174Guangdong 65.81780.35626.1%
Yulin5.7968Guangxi 25.48740.30945.6%
Anyang5.4776Henan 95.17280.30485.9%
Weifang9.3867Shandong 39.08620.30053.3%
Baoding9.2426Hebei 38.94680.29583.3%
Jining8.3579Shandong 68.08190.2763.4%
Cangzhou7.3008Hebei 57.05480.2463.5%
Zhangzhou5.0543Fujian 44.810.24435.1%
Handan9.414Hebei 29.17470.23932.6%
Liaocheng5.9521Shandong 85.78990.16222.8%
Tangshan7.718Hebei 47.57730.14071.9%
Yantai7.1021Shandong 76.96820.13391.9%
Xinyang6.2344Henan 86.10870.12572.1%
Shantou5.502Guangdong 95.3910.1112.1%
Yongzhou5.2898Hunan 45.19430.09551.8%
Zhoukou9.026Henan 38.95320.07280.8%
Dezhou5.6112Shandong 95.56820.0430.8%
Xingtai7.1111Hebei 67.10410.0070.1%
Zhanjiang6.9812Guangdong 56.9933-0.0121-0.2%
Taian5.4722Shandong 105.4942-0.022-0.4%
Suzhou5.3244Anhui 35.3529-0.0285-0.5%
Dazhou5.3854Sichuan 35.4681-0.0827-1.5%
Shangrao6.4911Jiangxi 26.5797-0.0886-1.4%
QuJing5.7658Yunnan 25.8551-0.0893-1.5%
Zhaotong5.0926Yunnan 35.2135-0.1209-2.3%
Zhumadian7.0084Henan 67.2307-0.2223-3.1%
Xiangyang5.261Hubei 35.5003-0.2393-4.4%
Huanggang5.8827Hubei 26.1621-0.2794-4.5%
Jieyang5.5778Guangdong 85.877-0.2992-5.1%
Yichun5.0077Jiangxi 45.4196-0.4119-7.6%
Yueyang5.0519Hunan 65.4761-0.4242-7.8%
Changde5.2791Hunan 55.7146-0.4355-7.6%
Jingzhou5.2312Hubei 45.6917-0.4605-8.1%
Hengyang6.6452Hunan 27.1415-0.4963-7.0%
Shaoyang6.5635Hunan 37.0717-0.5082-7.2%
Nanyang9.7131Henan 210.263-0.5499-5.4%
Yancheng6.7096Jiangsu 67.2602-0.5506-7.6%
Harbin10.0099Heilongjiang 110.636-0.6261-5.9%
Nanchong5.6075Sichuan 26.2786-0.6711-10.7%

There are 10 cities in Shandong, 9 in Henan and 9 in Guangdong

From the distribution of 91 cities, Shandong, the 3rd largest economic province, has the most cities with population of voer 5 million, reaching 10. Shandong’s landform is mainly plain, the economy of the province is developed, and the urban area are mainly small and medium-sized cities. The population distribution is relatively balanced and the population density is relatively large.

Henan province, which shares the Yellow River basin with Shandong, ranks 2nd with 9 cities among the 91. It is worth noting that the Huang-Huai-Hai Great Plain, which covers Shandong, Beijing and Tianjin, most of Henan and Hebei, and northern Anhui and Jiangsu, is one of the regions with the highest density of cities with a population of more than 5 million in China.

Niu Fengrui, a researcher at the urban development and environment research center of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, analyzed to WentChina. The agricultural production conditions in the Huang Huai Hai great plain are particularly good, the development is relatively early in history, and the population density is relatively large. Some places have a population of more than 1000 people per square kilometer, and cities have jurisdiction over many counties, which makes it easier to form a large population city. Even if some cities have a large population outflow, the population base is still large.

One of the characteristics of some cities is that the industry is underdeveloped, the population scale gathered in the central urban area is small, and a large number of people are distributed in the counties under their jurisdiction. For example, Nanyang has a population of more than 9 million, but there are only two municipal districts, another 10 counties and one county-level city. Zhoukou has jurisdiction over 2 districts, 7 counties and 1 county-level city.

In addition to the Huang Huai Hai Plain, the population density of the Yangtze River Delta, Guangdong and the middle and upper reaches of the Yangtze River is also relatively large, with more cities of large population . There are 9 cities in Guangdong with a permanent resident population of more than 5 million, second only to Shandong and tied for the second place with Henan. Among the 9 populous cities in Guangdong, 5 cities are located in the developed areas of the Zhujiang River Delta, namely Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Dongguan, Foshan and Huizhou. The economically developed Zhujiang River Delta has not only attracted a large number of population inflows from outside the province, but also from Eastern and northwestern Guangdong. Outside the Zhujiang River Delta, there are Shantou and Jieyang in eastern Guangdong and Zhanjiang and Maoming in western Guangdong. In general, the coastal areas of eastern and western Guangdong have a large area of arable land and accommodate a large population.

Related: Interesting Facts and Figures About the Greater Bay Area (GBA)

In general, plains tend to have more people, more cities. And some places with few plains, due to more developed economy, will also attract a large influx of people. For example, The landform of Zhejiang is “70% mountains, 20% waters and 10% field”, with many mountains and hills but little land. However, 7 of Zhejiang’s 11 cities have a population of more than 5 million.

Tang Hairu, vice chairman of expert Committee of Hangzhou Planning Committee, analyzed that zhejiang has a small urban-rural income gap and balanced regional development. Zhejiang is dominated by private economy, and many counties have formed their own characteristic industrial clusters with strong development power.

These populous cities have prominent labor advantages, especially with the improvement of the comprehensive transportation system to the Big 3 economic circles, labor-intensive industries have prominent advantages.

At the executive meeting of the State Council held on July 22 last year, it was planned to strengthen the construction of new urbanization, make up for shortcomings, expand domestic demand and improve people’s quality of life; Determine measures to support multi-channel flexible employment and promote the increase of residents’ employment and income. The meeting also proposed to develop labor-intensive industries and provide opportunities for farmers to work nearby.

Provincial distribution of cities with a population of 5 million



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