Regional reports

Hainan: 70 years on

Updated: Nov 15, 2019 Print
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Editor’s Note: Starting in May, the State Council Information Office has been organizing news conferences for each province, autonomous region and municipality to give briefings about their social and economic development since the founding of New China 70 years ago.

Liu Cigui (second from left), secretary of the CPC Hainan Provincial Committee, Shen Xiaoming (second from right), governor of Hainan Provincial People's Government, and deputy governor Shen Danyang (right) detail the province’s social and economic development and answer reporters’ questions during the Hainan session held Sept 16, 2019 in Beijing. [Photo/]

Economic Growth

In 2018, the regional GDP of Hainan was 483.21 billion yuan ($68.9 billion) and the revenue in the general public budget was 75.27 billion yuan, up by a factor of 23.1 times and 253.3 times respectively compared with 1987. Per capita GDP was only 1,220 yuan in 1988, while the number has reached 51,955 yuan after three decades of development. The ratio of three industries (primary, secondary and tertiary) has been adjusted from 50:19:31 to 20.7:22.7:56.6.

People’s Livelihoods

In the early days of the establishment of the province, poor people accounted for quite a large proportion and 85 percent of goods were transferred from the mainland. In 2018, the province’s per capita disposable incomes of urban and rural residents had increased by 32.8 times and 26.9 times compared with that of 1987. By the end of 2018, there were only 45,000 poor people in Hainan, and the incidence of poverty had fallen to 1.3 percent.

Over 70 percent of the province’s annual financial expenditure is used to improve people's livelihoods. There will be at least a provincial-level middle school, a primary school, a kindergarten and a hospital in each city and county. The registered urban unemployment rate remained at a low level of 2.3 percent. The proportion of centenarians and longevity index in Hainan ranks top in the country. It has nearly 2,200 centenarians and is known as a longevity and health island.

Industrial Development

There are 12 key industries in Hainan province: tourism, tropical high-efficiency agriculture, the internet, medical and health, modern financial services, conferences and exhibitions, modern logistics, marine industry (including oil and gas), pharmaceuticals, low carbon manufacturing, real estate, and education, culture and sports.

Blessed with unique geographical advantages, Hainan aims to cultivate three distinctive industries: seeds, deep sea and aerospace. The province is vigorously promoting the construction of three carriers for these industries: the Nanfan Scientific and Research Breeding Base in Sanya, the Sanya Deep Sea Science and Technology City, and the Wenchang International Aerospace City. Through 10 to 15 years of efforts, the three industries are expected to become new pillar industries in Hainan.

Green Development

Hainan has taken the lead in building an ecological province in the country since 1999. Today, the quality of the ecological environment is first-class in the country. The forest coverage rate in recent years has remained stable at around 62.1 percent. The ratio of good air quality days is around 99 percent. And the annual average PM2.5 concentration is estimated to have dropped to 16 micrograms per cubic meter in 2019 from 18 micrograms in 2017. The water quality rate of the main rivers, and lakes and offshore waters reached 94.4 percent and 96.6 percent.


Established in 1988, Hainan is the country's largest special economic zone. In April 2018, it was granted approval to build a pilot free trade zone covering the whole island and to explore the establishment of a free trade port with Chinese characteristics. Since 2018, the province has attached great importance to introducing foreign investment and international talents. More than 70,000 talents from home and abroad have been introduced to work or start a business in the province.

In 2018, the proportion of newly established foreign-funded enterprises rose by 85.6 percent, the actual utilization of foreign capital grew by 112.7 percent, and import and export volume increased by 20.8 percent. From January to August 2019, the number of newly established foreign-invested enterprises soared by 189.2 percent, and the actual utilization of foreign capital surged by 565.5 percent, ranking first in the country. The net growth rate of imports and exports was 37.4 percent, taking second place in the country.

China's southernmost province Hainan is hailed as a holiday paradise for its warm climate, picturesque sea views and towering coconut trees. From a relatively backward border island to one of the most open and dynamic areas in the country, Hainan owes its considerable progress to China’s deepening reform and opening-up. [Photo/VCG]


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