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1.a populous province of south central China
2008 Sichuan riots • 2215 Sichuan • Aba, Sichuan • Apostolic Vicariate of Eastern Sichuan • Campaign to Suppress Bandits in the Border Region of Hunan–Hubei–Sichuan • Changning County, Sichuan • Dawu County, Sichuan • Dazhou, Sichuan • Dujiangyan City, Sichuan • Eight Immortals from Sichuan • Encirclement Campaign against Hunan–Hubei–Sichuan–Guizhou Soviet • Fushun County, Sichuan • Gong County, Sichuan • Huanglong, Sichuan • Huidong County, Sichuan • Hunan–Hubei–Sichuan–Guizhou Soviet • Jianyang, Sichuan • Jin River (Sichuan) • Li County, Sichuan • List of administrative divisions of Sichuan • List of earthquakes in Sichuan • List of prisons in Sichuan • List of universities and colleges in Sichuan • Lushan County, Sichuan • Min River (Sichuan) • Music of Sichuan • North Sichuan Medical College • North Sichuan Road (Shanghai) • Pingshan County, Sichuan • Politics of Sichuan • Pujiang County, Sichuan • Rong County, Sichuan • Sichuan Agricultural University • Sichuan Airlines • Sichuan Airlines destinations • Sichuan Conservatory of Music • Sichuan Daily • Sichuan Digging Frog • Sichuan Dragons • Sichuan FAW Toyota Motor • Sichuan FC • Sichuan Field Mouse • Sichuan Fine Arts Institute • Sichuan Giant Panda Sanctuaries • Sichuan Golden Snub-nosed Monkey • Sichuan Guancheng • Sichuan International Studies University • Sichuan Jay • Sichuan Lantian Helicopter Company Limited • Sichuan Leaf-warbler • Sichuan Mandarin • Sichuan Meilianshu • Sichuan Mongols • Sichuan Normal University • Sichuan Opera • Sichuan Partridge • Sichuan Science and Technology Museum • Sichuan Short-tailed Shrew • Sichuan Sika Deer • Sichuan Takin • Sichuan Treecreeper • Sichuan University • Sichuan University Sports Centre • Sichuan Wood Owl • Sichuan basin • Sichuan clique • Sichuan deer • Sichuan invasion • Sichuan pepper • Sichuan–Shanghai gas pipeline • Weiyuan County, Sichuan • Xiangcheng County, Sichuan • Xuri, Sichuan • Yingshan County, Sichuan • Yuexi County, Sichuan • Ziyang, Sichuan
parts; area; region; part of the country; district[ClasseParExt...]
pays socialiste et assimilé (fr)[Classe]
|Abbreviations: 川 or 蜀 (pinyin: Chuān or Shǔ
Sichuanese: Cuan1 or Su2)
|Origin of name||Short for 川峡四路 chuānxiá sìlù
literally "The Four Circuits
of the Rivers and Gorges",
referring to the four circuits during the Song Dynasty
(and largest city)
|CPC Ctte Secretary||Liu Qibao|
|Area||485,000 km2 (187,000 sq mi) (5th)|
|- Latitude||25° 58' to 34° 19' N|
|- Longitude||97° 21' to 108° 32' E|
180 /km2 (470 /sq mi) (22nd)
- per capita
|CNY 2.15 trillion
US$ 340 billion (9th)
US$ 3,129 (25th)
|HDI (2008)||0.763 (medium) (24th)|
|Ethnic composition||Han - 95%
Yi - 2.6%
Tibetan - 1.5%
Qiang - 0.4%
|Languages and dialects||Sichuanese Mandarin|
|Prefectural level||21 divisions|
|County level||181 divisions|
|Township level*||5011 divisions|
|Source for population and GDP data:
《中国统计年鉴—2005》 China Statistical Yearbook 2005Source for nationalities data:
《2000年人口普查中国民族人口资料》 Tabulation on nationalities of 2000 population census of China*As at December 31, 2004
|Template ■ Discussion ■ WikiProject China|
Sichuan (help·info) (Chinese: 四川, known formerly in the West by its postal map spellings of Szechwan or Szechuan) is a province in Southwest China with its capital in Chengdu. The current name of the province, "四川", is an abbreviation of "四川路" (Sì Chuānlù), or "Four circuits of rivers", which is itself abbreviated from "川峡四路" (Chuānxiá Sìlù), or "Four circuits of rivers and gorges", named after the division of the existing circuit into four during the Northern Song Dynasty.
The province and its vicinity were the cradle of unique local civilizations, which can be dated back to at least the fifteenth century BC (coinciding with the later years of the Shang Dynasty). Beginning from the ninth century BC, Shu (today Chengdu) and Ba (today Chongqing City) emerged as cultural and administrative centers where two rival kingdoms were established.
Shu's existence was unknown until an archaeological discovery in 1986 at a small village named Sanxingdui (三星堆) in Guanghan County. It is believed to be an ancient city of the Shu Kingdom, where excavations have yielded invaluable archaeological information.
Although the Qin Dynasty destroyed the kingdoms of Shu and Ba, the Qin government accelerated the technological and agricultural advancements of Sichuan making it comparable to that of the Huang He (Yellow River) Valley. The Dujiangyan Irrigation System, built in the 3rd century BC under the inspection of Li Bing, was the symbol of modernization of that period. Composed of a series of dams, it redirected the flow of the Min Jiang, a major tributary of the Yangtze River, to fields, relieving the damage of seasonal floods. The construction and various other projects greatly increased the harvest of the area which thus became the main source of provisions and men for Qin's unification of China.
Various ores were abundant. Adding to its significance, the area was also on the trade route from the Huang He Valley to foreign countries of the southwest, especially India.
The area's military importance matches its commercial and agricultural significance. As a basin surrounded by the Himalayas to the west, the Qinling Range to the north, and mountainous areas of Yunnan to the south, Sichuan is prone to fog. Since the Yangtze flows through the basin and is thus upstream of eastern China, navies could be easily sailed downstream. Therefore Sichuan was the base for numerous amphibious military forces and also served as the refuge of Chinese governments throughout history. A few independent regimes were founded; the most famous was Shu Han of the Three Kingdoms. The Jin Dynasty first conquered Shu Han on its path of unification. During the Tang Dynasty, it was a battlefront against Tibet.
The Southern Song Dynasty established coordinated defenses against the Mongolian Yuan Dynasty in Sichuan and Xiangyang. The Sichuan tea industry was monopolized by the state to pay for warhorses, but this worsened the situation. The line of defense was finally broken through after the first use of firearms in history during the six-year siege of Xiangyang, which ended in 1273.
During the Ming Dynasty major architectural works were created in Sichuan. Bao'en Temple is a well-preserved fifteenth century monastery complex built between 1440 and 1446 during Emperor Yingzong's reign (1427–64) in the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644). Dabei Hall enshrines a thousand-armed wooden image of Guanyin and Huayan Hall is a repository with a revolving sutra cabinet. The wall paintings, sculptures and other ornamental details are masterpieces of the Ming period.
The Chinese rebel leader, Zhang Xianzhong, nicknamed Yellow Tiger, conquered Sichuan Province in the middle of the 17th century and massacred a large native population. A massive resettlement called Huguang fill Sichuan (湖廣填四川) lasted more than a century during the Qing Dynasty. A landslide dam on the Dadu River caused by an earthquake gave way on 10 June 1786. The resulting flood killed 100,000 people.
The current borders of Sichuan(which then included Chongqing) were established in the early 18th century. In the early 20th century the newly founded Republic of China established Chuanbian Special Administrative District (川邊特別行政區), which latter became Xikang province, including the western part of Sichuan province inhabited by Yi, Tibetan and Qiang minorities and eastern part of modern Tibet Autonomous Region.
In the 20th century, as Beijing, Shanghai, Nanjing, and Wuhan had all been lost to the Japanese during the Second Sino-Japanese War, the capital of the Republic of China had been temporary relocated to Chongqing. The difficulty of accessing the region overland from the eastern China and the foggy climate hindering the accuracy of Japanese bombing of the Sichuan basin and the city of Chongqing made the region the stronghold of Chiang Kai-Shek's Kuomintang government during 1938-45.
As the Second Sino-Japanese War was soon followed by the resumed Chinese Civil War, and the cities of the east fell to the Communists one after another, the Kuomintang government again tried to make Sichuan its stronghold on the mainland. Chiang Kai-Shek himself flew to Chongqing from Taiwan in November 1949 to lead the defense. But the same month Chongqing fell to the Communists, followed by Chengdu on 10 December. The Kuomintang general Wang Sheng wanted to stay behind with his troops to continue anticommunist guerilla war in Sichuan, but was recalled to Taiwan, many of his soldiers making their way there as well, via Burma.
The People's Republic of China, founded in 1949, abolished Xikang province of the Republic of China and merged western part of that province into Tibet Autonomous Region in 1965 while the rest of Xikang was returned to Sichuan province in 1955.
The province was deeply affected by the Great Chinese Famine of 1959-1961, during which period some 9.4 million people (13.07% of the population at the time) died. When Deng Xiaoping took power in 1978, Sichuan was one of the first provinces to undergo limited experimentation with free enterprise.
From 1955 until 1997 Sichuan had been China's most populous province, hitting 100 million mark shortly after the 1982 census figure of 99,730,000. This changed in 1997 when the city of Chongqing as well as the surrounding counties of Fuling and Wanxian were split off into the new Chongqing Municipality. The new municipality was formed to spearhead China's effort to develop its western provinces, as well as to coordinate the resettlement of residents from the reservoir areas of the Three Gorges Dam project. In 1997 when Sichuan split, the sum of the two parts was recorded to be 114,720,000 people. As of 2010, Sichuan ranks as both the 3rd largest and 4th most populous province in China.
In May 2008, an earthquake with a magnitude of 7.9/8.0 hit just 79 km northwest of the provincial capital of Chengdu. Official figures recorded a death toll of nearly 70,000 people, and millions of people were left homeless.
|— Sub-provincial city —|
|— Prefecture-level city —|
|— Autonomous prefectures —|
Gānzī Zàngzú Zìzhìzhōu
(for Tibetan & Qiang)
Ābà Zàngzú Qiāngzú Zìzhìzhōu
Liángshān Yízú Zìzhìzhōu
Sichuan, within its present borders, consists of two very geographically distinct parts. The eastern part of the province is mostly within the fertile Sichuan basin (which is shared by Sichuan with the now-separate Chongqing Municipality). The western Sichuan consists of the numerous mountain ranges forming the easternmost part of the Tibetan Plateau, which are known generically as Hengduan Mountains. One of these ranges, Daxue Shan, contains the highest point of the province - Gongga Shan, 7,556 meters tall.
Lesser mountain ranges surround the Sichuan Basin from north, east, and south. Among them are the Daba Mountains, in the province's northeast.
The Yangtze River and its tributaries flows through the mountains of western Sichuan and the Sichuan basin; thus, the province is upstream of the great cities that stand along the Yangtze River in the central and eastern China, such as Chongqing, Wuhan, Nanjing and Shanghai. One of the major tributaries of the Yangtze within the province is the Minjiang River of central Sichuan, which joins the Yangtze at Yibin.
Due to the great difference in the terrain, the climate of the province is highly variable. The Sichuan Basin (including Chengdu) in the eastern half of the province experiences a subtropical monsoon climate with long, warm to hot, humid summers and short, mild to cool, dry and cloudy winters, with China's lowest sunshine totals. The western areas have a mountainous climate characterized by very cold winters and mild summers, with plentiful sunshine. The southern part of the province, including Panzhihua, has a sunny, subtropical climate with very mild winters and hot summers.
Sichuan borders Qinghai province to the northwest, Gansu province to the north, Shaanxi province to the northeast, Chongqing municipality to the east, Guizhou province to the southeast, Yunnan province to the south, and Tibet Autonomous Region to the west.
Larix potaninii in autumn colour.
The politics of Sichuan is structured in a dual party-government system like all other governing institutions in mainland China.
The Governor of Sichuan is the highest ranking official in the People's Government of Sichuan. However, in the province's dual party-government governing system, the Governor has less power than the Sichuan Communist Party of China Provincial Committee Secretary, colloquially termed the "Sichuan CPC Party Chief".
Sichuan has been historically known as the "Province of Abundance". It is one of the major agricultural production bases of China. Grain, including rice and wheat, is the major product with output that ranked first in China in 1999. Commercial crops include citrus fruits, sugar canes, sweet potatoes, peaches and grapeseeds. Sichuan also had the largest output of pork among all the provinces and the second largest output of silkworm cocoons in China in 1999. Sichuan is rich in mineral resources. It has more than 132 kinds of proven underground mineral resources of which reserves of 11 kinds including vanadium, titanium, and lithium are the largest in China. The Panxi region alone possesses 13.3% of the reserves of iron, 93% of titanium, 69% of vanadium, and 83% of the cobalt of the whole country. Sichuan also possesses China's largest proven natural gas reserves, although the majority of which is transported to more developed eastern regions.
Sichuan is one of the major industrial centers of China. In addition to heavy industries such as coal, energy, iron and steel, the province has also established a light industrial sector comprising building materials, wood processing, food and silk processing. Chengdu and Mianyang are the production centers for textiles and electronics products. Deyang, Panzhihua, and Yibin are the production centers for machinery, metallurgical industries, and wine, respectively. Sichuan's wine production accounted for 21.9% of the country’s total production in 2000.
Great strides have been made in developing Sichuan into a modern hi-tech industrial base, by encouraging both domestic and foreign investments in electronics and information technology (such as software), machinery and metallurgy (including automobiles), hydropower, pharmaceutical, food and beverage industries.
Other important industries in Sichuan include aerospace and defense (military) industries. A number of China's rockets (Long March rockets) and satellites were launched from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center, located in the city of Xichang.
Sichuan's beautiful landscapes and rich historical relics have also made the province a major center for tourism.
The Three Gorges Dam, the largest dam ever constructed, is being built on the Yangtze River in nearby Hubei province to control flooding in the Sichuan Basin, neighboring Yunnan province, and downstream. The plan is hailed by some as China's efforts to shift towards alternative energy sources and to further develop its industrial and commercial bases, but others have criticised it for its potentially harmful effects, such as massive resettlement of residents in the reservoir areas, loss of archeological sites, and ecological damages.
Sichuan's nominal GDP for 2011 was 2.15 trillion yuan (US$340 billion), equivalent to 17,380 RMB (US$2,545) per capita. In 2008, the per capita net income of rural residents was 4,121 yuan (US$593), up 16.2% from 2007. The per capita disposable income of the urbanites averaged 12,633 yuan (US$1,819), up 13.8% from 2007.
According to the Sichuan Department of Commerce, the province's total foreign trade was US$22.04 billion in 2008, a year on year increase of 53.3 percent. Exports were US$13.1 billion, a year on year increase of 52.3 percent, while imports were US$8.93 billion, a year on year increase of 54.7 percent. These achievements were accomplished because of significant changes in China's foreign trade policy, acceleration of the yuan's appreciation, increase of commercial incentives and increase in production costs. The 18 cities and counties witnessed a steady rate of increase. Chengdu, Suining, Nanchong, Dazhou, Ya'an, Abazhou, and Liangshan all saw an increase of more than 40 percent while Leshan, Neijiang, Luzhou, Meishan, Ziyang, and Yibin saw an increase of more than 20 percent. Foreign trade in Zigong, Panzhihua, Guang'an, Bazhong and Ganzi remained constant.
The Sichuan government raised the minimum wage in the province by 12.5 percent at the end of December 2007. The monthly minimum wage went up from 400 to 450 yuan, with a minimum of 4.9 yuan per hour for part-time work, effective Dec. 26 2007. The government also reduced the four-tier minimum wage structure to three. The top tier mandates a minimum of 650 yuan per month, or 7.1 yuan per hour. National law allows each province to set minimum wages independently, but with a floor of 450 yuan per month.
Chengdu Economic and Technological Development Zone was approved as state-level development zone in February 2000. The zone now has a developed area of 10.25 square kilometers and has a planned area of 26 square kilometers. Chengdu Economic and Technological Development Zone (CETDZ) lies 13.6 kilometers east of Chengdu, the capital city of Sichuan Province and the hub of transportation and communication in southwest China. The zone has attracted investors and developers from more than 20 countries to carry out their projects there. Industries encouraged in the zone include mechanical, electronic, new building materials, medicine and food processing.
Chengdu Export Processing Zone was ratified by the State Council as one of the first 15 export processing zones in the country in April, 2000. In 2002, the state ratified the establishment of the Sichuan Chengdu Export Processing West Zone with a planned area of 1.5 km2, located inside the west region of the Chengdu Hi-tech Zone.
Established in 1988, Chengdu Hi-tech Industrial Development Zone was approved as one of the first national hi-tech development zones in 1991. In 2000, it was open to APEC and has been recognized as a national advanced hi-tech development zone in successive assessment activities held by China's Ministry of Science and Technology. It ranks 5th among the 53 national hi-tech development zones in China in terms of comprehensive strength. Chengdu Hi-tech Development Zone covers an area of 82.5 km2, consisting of the South Park and the West Park. By relying on the city sub-center which is under construction, the South Park is focusing on creating a modernized industrial park of science and technology with scientific and technological innovation, incubation R&D, modern service industry and Headquarters economy playing leading roles. Priority has been given to the development of software industry. Located on both sides of the "Chengdu-Dujiangyan-Jiuzhaigou"golden tourism channel, the West Park aims at building a comprehensive industrial park targeting at industrial clustering with complete supportive functions. The West Park gives priority to three major industries i.e. electronic information, biomedicine and precision machinery.
Mianyang Hi-Tech Industrial Development Zone was established in 1992, with a planned area of 43 square kilometers. The zone is situated 96 kilometers away from Chengdu, and is 8 km away from Mianyang Airport. Since its establishment, the zone accumulated 177.4 billion yuan of industrial output, 46.2 billion yuan of gross domestic product, fiscal revenue 6.768 billion yuan. There are more than 136 high-tech enterprises in the zone and they accounted for more than 90% of the total industrial output. Zone is a leader in electronic information industry, biological medicine, new materials and production of motor vehicles and parts.
On 3 November 2007, the Sichuan Transportation Bureau announced that the Sui-Yu Expressway was completed after three years of construction. After completion of the Chongqing section of the road, the 36.64 km expressway connected Cheng-Nan Expressway and formed the shortest expressway from Chengdu to Chongqing. The new expressway is 50 km shorter than the pre-existing road between Chengdu and Chongqing; thus journey time between the two cities was reduced by an hour, now taking two and a half hours. The Sui-Yu Expressway is a four lane overpass with a speed limit of 80 km/h. The total investment was 1.045 billion yuan.
Major railways in Sichuan include the Baoji–Chengdu, Chengdu–Chongqing, Chengdu–Kunming, Neijiang–Kunming, Suining-Chongqing and Chengdu–Dazhou Railways. A high-speed rail line connects Chengdu and Dujiangyan.
The majority of the province's population is Han Chinese, who are found scattered throughout the region with the exception of the far western areas. Thus, significant minorities of Tibetans, Yi, Qiang and Naxi reside in the western portion forming a traditional transition zone between Central Asian and East Asian cultures. The Eastern Lipo, included with either Yi people or Lisu people as well as the A-Hmao also are among the ethnic groups of the provinces. Sichuan was China's most populous province before Chongqing was carved out of it; it is currently the fourth most populous, after Guangdong, Shandong and Henan.
It was the third most populous sub-national entity in the world, after Uttar Pradesh, India and the Russian SFSR until 1991 when the Soviet Union was dissolved. It is also one of the only four to ever reach 100 million people (Uttar Pradesh, Russian RSFSR, Maharashtra, and Sichuan). It is currently 6th.
|This section requires expansion.|
The Li Bai Memorial, located at Zhongba Town of northern Jiangyou County in Sichuan Province, is a museum in memory of Li Bai, a Chinese poet in the Tang Dynasty (618-907), at the place where he grew up. It was prepared in 1962 on the occasion of 1,200th anniversary of his death, completed in 1981 and opened to the public in October 1982. The memorial is built in the style of the classic garden of the Tang Dynasty.
The most widely used variety of Chinese spoken in Sichuan is Sichuanese, which is the lingua franca in Sichuan, Chongqing and part of Tibet. Although Sichuanese is generally classified as a dialect of Mandarin, it is highly divergent in phonology, vocabulary, and even grammar from the standard language. Minjiang dialect is especially difficult for speakers of other Mandarin dialects to understand.
The prefectures of Garzê and Ngawa (Aba) in western Sichuan are populated by Tibetan and Qiang people. Tibetans speak the Kham and Amdo dialects of Tibetan, as well as various Qiangic languages. Qiangic languages is also spoken by the Qiang and other related ethnicities. The Yi of Liangshan prefecture in southern Sichuan speak the Yi language, which is more closely related to Burmese; Yi is written using the Yi script, a syllabary standardized in 1974. Like in all of mainland China, regional languages are being supplanted by the mandatory instruction of Mandarin Chinese in nearly all schools regardless of the ethnicity of the students. However, certain accommodations to non-Chinese speakers are made in the minority inhabited regions of Sichuan, including some bi-lingual signage and public school instruction in non-Mandarin minority languages. Tibetan exile communities have claimed the Chinese government practices both implicit and explicit language discrimination in these areas.
The Sichuanese are proud of their cuisine, known as one of the Four Great Traditions of Chinese cuisine. The cuisine here is of "one dish, one shape, hundreds of dishes, hundreds of tastes", as the saying goes, to describe its acclaimed diversity. The most prominent traits of Sichuanese cuisine are described by four words: spicy, hot, fresh and fragrant. Sichuan cuisine is popular in the whole nation of China, so are Sichuan chefs. Two famous Sichuan chefs are Chen Kenmin and his son Chen Kenichi, who was Iron Chef Chinese on the Japanese television series "Iron Chef".
During the 2008 Sichuan earthquake, a disproportionately high number of school structures collapsed, especially in rural areas of Sichuan, leading to allegations of corruption and promises by the government for an official inquiry. However, it remains unclear whether the allegedly shoddy construction was unique to Sichuan, as opposed to a nation-wide practice that only became visible in Sichuan due to the earthquake.
Executive vice governor, Wei Hong, on 20 November 2008 confirmed that 19,065 identified schoolchildren died, and more than 90,000 were dead or missing after the earthquake. He stated that 200,000 homes had been rebuilt, and 685,000 were under reconstruction, but 1.94 million households were still without permanent shelter. 1,900 schools had been reconstructed, with initial relocation of 25 townships, including Beichuan and Wenchuan, two of the most devastated areas. The government spent $441 billion on relief and reconstruction efforts.
Professional sports teams in Sichuan include:
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|Tibet Autonomous Region||Chongqing|