Located in the south central part of the Chinese mainland, Hunan has long been known for its natural beauty. Its mixture of mountains and water makes it among the most beautiful provinces in China. As the cradle of Huxiang Culture, Hunan boasts profound cultural deposits and abundant sites of historic significance and cultural heritages, which attract tourists from all over the world.
In recent years, basis of the provincial tourism industry has been further strengthened and the "six elements" (food, accommodation, travel, shopping, entertainment) of tourism have been much improved. After the long-term development, there are more than 4,000 kinds of Hunan cuisine, with over 300 famous dishes. Stinky tofu, rice noodles and other local delicacies are popular throughout the country. According to the statistics from the Hunan Provincial Tourism Bureau, Hunan has 595 starred hotels by the first half of 2015, including 17 Five-star hotels and 62 Four-star ones. The average room occupancy of the starred hotels reached 75.66%, topping the whole country. International hotels such as Shangri-La, St. Regis, Westin, Marriott, Hilton and Intercontinental Hotel have settled in Hunan. More than ten international hotels are to open by the end of the year. Construction of scenic spots is continuously promoted. The number of graded scenic areas increased in recent years, with seven 5A-class scenic spots and 88 4A-class scenic areas approved by the national authority by the end of 2014. Xiang brand tourism commodities have come into being in recent years, covering Hunan’s cigarette, alcohol, porcelain, embroidery, tea, chrysanthemum stone, silver ornament and souvenir of Chairman Mao. Colorful recreations entertain tourists. Changsha is well-known as a “capital of entertainment” for its broadcasting and television programme, bars, firework show. Zhangjiajie, Shaoshan and Fenghuang County’s real-life performances were highly appraised by domestic and overseas audience.
The year 2014 registered 410 million domestic tourists in Hunan, rising by 14.4 percent compared with that of 2013. The number of inbound visitors to China totaled 2.195 million, a fall of 4.8 percent. The overall revenue generated by tourism amounted to 305.07 billion yuan, a jump of 13.8 percent. Domestic revenue reached 300.15 billion yuan, marking a 14.1 percent growth, while foreign exchange earnings, decreasing by 2.8 percent, lowered to 800 million USD.
Science & Technology
Hunan Province holds a leading position in science and technology among the central provinces of China.
The number employed in science and technology exceeds one million in Hunan. There are 86 academicians of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Chinese Academy of Engineering, represented by several world-renowned scientists, including Yuan Longping, "Father of Hybrid Rice", Lu Guangxiu, the first Chinese geneticist to research in vitro fertilization, and Huang Boyun, an expert in new materials.
In order to promote its scientific and technological competitiveness, the province also supported and carried forward a number of major science & technology projects in key technical areas. Tianhe-2 supercomputer developed by National University of Defense Technology obtained championships in supercomputing; the Sany transfer pump set a new world performance record; and a number of technologies of the CSR Zhuzhou Electric Locomotive Co., Ltd occupied first place in the country and even in the world, with its urban light rail trains exported to the Middle East. "Hunan technologies" and "Hunan inventions" are taking big strides forward in the rest of the world.
Up to 2014, Hunan has 14 national engineering (technology) research centers, 168 provincial engineering technology research centers, 12 national key laboratories, and 33 national-recognized enterprise technology centers. A total of 4,879 technology transfer contracts were signed, representing 9.77 billion yuan in value. The number of scientific research results reached 953, with 20 National Scientific and Technological Advancement Awards, three National Awards for Technological Invention and two National Natural Science Awards.
In 2014, Hunan's super hybrid rice set a world record of yielding 1,027.6 kilograms per mu (0.0667 hectares). The first domestic and also world's second 8-inch IGBT special chip production line was put into operation and the National Supercomputing Center in Changsha was put into use. The number of patent applications and authorized patents reached 44,194 and 26,637 respectively, of which 14,474 patent applications for original inventions were accepted, and 4,160 patents for such inventions were authorized. The number of patent applications for enterprises, institutions of higher learning, and scientific research institutes reached 23,524, 5,806 and 596 respectively, while the number of authorized patents were 15,126, 3,040 and 319. The value-added of the new and high technology industry amounted to 514.75 billion yuan.
By the end of 2014, 1,716 laboratories for product inspection were established in Hunan with 63 newly founded. Of the total, there were 19 national product quality supervision and inspection centers, including one new center; 103 legal metrology verification institutions; 104 special equipment inspection agencies, as well as 10,065 batches of key industrial products under quality random inspection. Hunan has involved in the development of 25 national standards and established 153 local standards. The mapping departments published 111 maps, providing 275,000 geodetic coordinates, 31,700 aerial photos and 59,291 basic geographic information data for social economic development.
Finance & Insurance
Hunan's total fiscal revenue reached 362.97 billion yuan, up by 9.5 percent compared with the previous year, and local fiscal revenue, totaling 225.99 billion yuan, increased by 11.3 percent. Of the total, tax revenue and nontax revenue reached 143.82 billion yuan (a 10.7 percent increase) and 82.18 billion yuan (a 12.3 percent increase) respectively. Tax revenue turned over to central government was 104.73 billion yuan, a 5.0 percent growth, including 31.71 billion yuan income tax, a 13.1 percent increase. Hunan's fiscal expenditure totaled 502.45 billion yuan, up by 7.1 percent. The expenditures for general public services, education, social security and employment, health care and family planning, urban and rural communities affairs, agriculture, forestry and water affairs as well as housing security, were 67.44 billion yuan (an increase of 15.0 percent), 82.29 billion yuan (an increase of 1.7 percent), 67.40 billion yuan (an increase of 7.7 percent), 41.42 billion yuan (an increase of 7.8 percent), 45.63 billion yuan (an increase of 17.5 percent), 53.62 billion yuan (an increase of 3.8 percent) and 19.26 billion yuan (an increase of 10.3 percent) respectively.
Savings deposits in RMB and other currencies in all items of financial institutions totaled 3,025.56 billion yuan at the end of the year, a 337.65 billion yuan increase compared to the start of the year. Of the total, corporate deposit and individual deposit were 1,235.74 billion yuan and 1,676.71 billion yuan, increased by 137.22 billion yuan and 198.26 billion yuan respectively. By the end of the year, loan balance in RMB and overseas currencies in all items of financial institutions totaled 2,078.31 billion yuan, an increase of 252.44 billion yuan in relation to the beginning of the year. Of the total, short-term loan balance and medium and long-term loan balance were 605.90 billion yuan and 1,431.27 billion yuan, up by 38.64 billion yuan and 200.78 billion yuan respectively. Besides, loan balance for development of real estate, SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) and security housing was 119.69 billion yuan, 734.57 billion yuan and 28.0 billion yuan respectively.
There were 93 listed companies in Hunan Province by the end of 2014, among which 78 are domestic ones and 15 overseas ones. The direct financing of the province totaled 185.63 billion yuan, up by 30.7 percent. Of the total, 40.37 billion yuan (an increase of 181.7%) was raised through first issue, additional issue, allotment of shares and issue of corporate bonds etc. At the end of the year, there were 255 stock companies in the province with 4,166.26 billion yuan trading volume. Three futures companies in the area have been established with 9,448.57 billion yuan business volume.
The annual original premium income, marking a 15.6 percent increase, reached 58.77 billion yuan. Of the total income, income from life insurance, health insurance, accident insurance and property insurance was 31.7 billion yuan (a 10.8 percent increase), 4.35 billion yuan (an increase of 33.0 percent), 1.6 billion yuan (an increase of 15.5 percent) and 21.13 billion yuan (an increase of 20.2 percent) respectively. Meanwhile, the total claim was 22.63 billion yuan, a growth of 17.4 percent.
Source: Hunan Province Statistical Communiqué for 2014 Economic and Social Development