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China’s GDP by Province 2021

In 2021, China’s gross domestic product (GDP) reached 17.7 trillion USD, which is an 8.1 percent increase from the previous year, according to data collected from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS). Guangdong (USD 1,928 billion), Jiangsu (USD 1,804 billion) and Shandong (USD 1,288 billion) each take place as the top provinces by GDP. The top performers of the country which showed the highest growth percentage were Hubei (12.9%), Hainan (11.2%), and Shanxi (9.1%).

Top Provinces

Guangdong, located in the Southern part of China, remains the highest GDP among all the provinces in China for 33 consecutive years. In 2021, Guangdong recorded an 8 percent GDP growth and is the country’s first and only province to exceed 1,900 billion U.S dollars.

Dongguan in Guangdong province, often called the “factory of the world”, recorded over 157 billion U.S dollars and became the 24th Chinese city to surpass this milestone. The city passing the 157 billion USD threshold continues to showcase the country’s economic resilience during this pandemic. In 2021, its industrial investment increased by 25.3 percent year on year, which demonstrates entrepreneurs’ confidence in the future. Overseas investment also continues to show support in the city with foreign investment of nearly 3.75 billion U.S dollars in 2021.

Meanwhile, the remaining of the top 5 provinces also saw new highs in 2021. Jiangsu recorded a GDP of 1,804 billion USD which is the first time the province has exceeded the 1,000 billion-mark, with a 2.1 billion USD increase compared to the previous year. Shandong also hit a new record for the province as it ranked 3rd in China with a GDP of 1,288 billion USD. Zhejiang exceeded 1,000 billion USD for the first time, recording 1,140 billion USD which puts them in 4th place overall. Finally, Henan completes the top 5 provinces of the country with a GDP of 913 billion USD.

Notable Economic Growth Performers

In 2021, Hubei was the driving force for China’s recovery with a 12.9 percent GDP growth rate compared to the previous year. This notable growth indicated Hubei’s strive and determination to return to situations prior to the disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic. Hainan came at 2nd ranked with a growth rate of 11.2 percent which was driven by tourism, advanced technology, modern services, and agriculture. According to the Hainan Provincial Bureau of Statistics, more than 81 million domestic and overseas tourists visited Hainan in 2021, which increased by 25.5 percent year on year. Shanxi completes the top 3 performers with a 9.1 percent growth rate. Shanxi recorded that its agriculture, forestry, husbandry, and fisheries increased by 11.9 percent in the second half of 2021.

Economic performance of Southern China prevails against the North

In terms of region, Shandong (1,288 billion USD) and Henan (913 billion USD) was the only northern provinces among the top 10 provinces by GDP in 2021, while the rest were all located in the southern parts of China. In the north, the next top performing provinces were Hebei (626 billion USD), Beijing (624 billion USD), and Shaanxi (462 billion USD) which ranked 12th to 15th in the country, respectively. Increasing energy-related prices allowed Shanxi to record the fastest northern province to have economic growth (9.1%), which is ranked 3rd overall by Real growth in 2021.


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