The mission of our office is to assist American businesses enter and succeed in the Northeast China market. Our jurisdiction covers the provinces of Liaoning, Jilin, and Heilongjiang, together representing the fastest growing region of mainland China, with a population of 110 million and a land area of 800k square kilometers.
China’s Northeast region is rich in natural resources, including coal, oil, iron ore, and timber. The region is China’s heavy industrial center for iron and steel, oil, petrochemicals, shipbuilding, machine tools, aviation, and automobile manufacturing. Encompassing one of the world’s three black earth belts, the region is also an important agricultural, animal husbandry, and forestry base for China. The Northeast is China’s largest producer of corn, soybeans, and wheat, and the production of fruit crops and aquaculture are also rising in significance.
In 2003, the central government launched the “Revitalize Northeast” initiative, offering policy and financial incentives aimed at reforming state-owned industrial enterprises and developing new industries in the region, such as information technology, food processing, and services. Since then, plans and policies have continued to develop the Northeast as an important base for China’s manufacturing equipment, new materials and energy sources, grain and agricultural/stock production, and technological R&D and innovation. The Northeast has also been designated an area for ecological protection, including the region’s wildlife, mountain ranges, wetlands, forests, and grasslands.
In China’s Twelfth Five Year Plan (2011-2015), which outlines key economic development goals for the country, the Northeast was specifically mentioned in regards to continuing revival of the region’s historic industrial base. Key areas of development focus for Northeast China include:
Agricultural products and processing
Software and IT
Other development targets include deepening the reform of state-owned enterprises, supporting the region as a strategic base of national grain production and using the region as a food security base, promoting development of the private sector and SME’s, and reforming collective corporate owned factories.
Northeast China Economic Statistics:
GDP (million USD)
GDP growth rate
Foreign Trade (million USD)
Total Imports (million USD)
Total Exports (million USD)
As the most industrialized province of the Northeast region, Liaoning has benefited significantly from the government’s “Revitalize Northeast” initiative, undertaken in 2003. The capital city Shenyang, together with six mid-sized surrounding cities, is expanding into a “Greater Shenyang” region. In China’s Twelfth Five Year Plan, the development of the Shenyang Economic Zone was indicated as a national priority. The zone covers 8 large cities and 7 smaller cities. Shenyang is also hosting China’s 12th National Games, held August-September 2013, and infrastructure in the city and province have been boosted in preparation for the games.
Liaoning has the largest variety of manufacturing industries in China, including machine tools, metallurgy, transformers, petrochemicals, iron & steel, and crude oil. Well-established industries in the province include automobile parts and manufacturing, modern construction, agriculture products and processing, chemicals, and steel and nonferrous metals processing. Emerging industries include advanced equipment manufacturing, IT, biopharmaceuticals, aviation, new materials, and energy and environmental technologies.
Liaoning is the gateway to Northeast China and Inner Mongolia. Coastal city Dalian, with the biggest port in northeast China, has been selected by the central government to be developed into a transportation hub for Northeast Asia. Dalian also plays the leading role in the coastal economic development of the province. The regional development of Liaoning’s coastal economic belt is specifically mentioned in China’s Twelfth Five Year Plan, building on the Eleventh Five Year Plan, which outlined Liaoning’s “Five Points, One Line” development project, aimed at accelerating the development of five key industrial areas and providing interconnectivity between Liaoning’s coastal cities through the construction of a single road.
Source: Liaoning Provincial Government Economic & Social Development Statistical Bulletins
Jilin province holds a predominant position in China’s automobile industry. Jilin currently produces around 2 million units yearly, and has a goal to increase annual production to 4 million. China First Automobile Works, located in Jilin’s capital city, Changchun, is China’s largest automobile group with diversified production and assembly lines, and R&D centers for cars, trucks, and auto parts. Jilin also holds a leading position in the manufacture of railway vehicles in China.
Petrochemicals is another important industry in Jilin, and the province is in the process of upgrading the industry from initial processing to fine chemical production. Jilin City is home to CNPC Jilin Chemical, China’s largest manufacturing base for propylene, MMA, and TMP, and producer of over 32% of China’s oil products.
The province is also focused on developing pharmaceuticals and tourism, both of which are aided by Jilin’s strategic location between mountains and rivers. Jilin also recently signed an agreement with Singapore's Temasek to build the China-Singapore Jilin Food Zone, a food-processing industry park for husbandry breeding, grain processing, and the supply of high-quality food products.
Source: Jilin Provincial Government Economic & Social Development Statistical Bulletins
Petrochemicals and equipment manufacturing have traditionally been Heilongjiang’s pillar industries. Heavy industry plays an important role in the provincial economy and Heilongjiang boasts several Hi-Tech Industrial Development Zones. Heilongjiang is also home to the Daqing Oil Field, the largest in China. In addition to petroleum, other important minerals include coal and graphite.
Heilongjiang boasts vast farmland and abundant natural resources such as lumber. The province is Northeast China’s most important agricultural region, and serves as China’s top producer of soybeans. Due to its geographic location, Heilongjiang also plays an important role in trade between Russia and China.
In addition to strengthening its contribution towards national manufacturing and agricultural industries, the province has also focused on developing its dairy industry. Amongst provinces in China, Heilongjiang has the highest number of dairy cows and is the country’s top milk producer. The ongoing World Bank Heilongjiang Dairy Project aims to improve the financial viability of dairy operations within the province and develop innovative technologies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. International competitive bidding for the project includes purchasing plans for dairy cattle, frozen semen, DHI analytical instruments, TMR feed mixers, and animal waste treatment systems.
Source: Heilongjiang Provincial Government Economic & Social Development Statistical Bulletins
Given the speed and direction of the Northeast region’s macro development, excellent export opportunities exist for U.S. companies with products and services in or related to pollution control, clean energy technology, port construction, logistics development, automotive electronics, machine tools and equipment, and downstream food processing systems.
Please contact our office and let our Commercial Officer and team of Commercial Specialists help your business enter and succeed in Northeast China!
Information on important second-tier cities in Northeast China, Harbin and Dalian.
Overview of Liaoning Province, Jilin Province, and Heilongjiang Province from the U.S. Consulate General in Shenyang.
Webpage of the Foreign Commercial Service at the U.S. Consulate General in Shenyang can be found here.
U.S. Commercial Service, Shenyang
52 Shi Si Wei Road, Heping District
Shenyang, Liaoning 110003, China
Tel: (86-24) 2322-1198
Fax: (86-24) 2322-2206
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