Coordinates: 39°54′24″N 116°23′51″E / 39.90667°N 116.39750°E / 39.90667; 116.39750
Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Major ethnic groups
 • Han95%
GDP (2023)
License plate
京A, C, E, F, G, H, J, K, L, M, N, P, Q
京B (taxis)
京G, Y (outside urban area)
京O, D (police and authorities)
  • BJ / (jīng)
Chinese arborvitae (Platycladus orientalis)
Pagoda tree
(Styphnolobium japonicum)
Hanyu Pinyin


national capital region of China.[12]

Beijing is a

second busiest airport in the world (2010–2019).[14] In 2020, the Beijing subway was the fourth busiest and second longest in the world.[15] The Beijing Daxing International Airport, Beijing's second international airport, is the largest single-structure airport terminal in the world.[16][17]

Combining both modern and traditional style

Great Wall and the Grand Canal—all of which are popular tourist locations.[23] Siheyuans, the city's traditional housing style, and hutongs
, the narrow alleys between siheyuans, are major tourist attractions and are common in urban Beijing.

Beijing CBD is a center for Beijing's economic expansion, with the ongoing or recently completed construction of multiple skyscrapers. Beijing's Zhongguancun area is a world leading center of scientific and technological innovation as well as entrepreneurship. Beijing has been ranked the city with the largest scientific research output by the Nature Index since the list's inception in 2016.[29][30] The city has hosted numerous international and national sporting events, the most notable being the 2008 Summer Olympics and 2008 Summer Paralympics Games. In 2022, Beijing became the first city ever to host both the Summer and Winter Olympics,[31] and also the Summer and Winter Paralympics.[32] Beijing hosts 175 foreign embassies as well as the headquarters of many organizations, including the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), the Silk Road Fund, the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the Chinese Academy of Engineering, the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, the Central Academy of Fine Arts, the Central Academy of Drama, the Central Conservatory of Music, and the Red Cross Society of China


Over the past 3,000 years, the city of Beijing has had

Standard Mandarin. An older English spelling, Peking, was used by Jesuit missionary Martino Martini in a popular atlas published in Amsterdam in 1655.[34] Although Peking is no longer the common name for the city, some of the city's older locations and facilities, such as Beijing Capital International Airport, with the IATA code PEK, and Peking University
, still retain the former romanization.

The single Chinese character abbreviation for Beijing is , which appears on automobile license plates in the city. The official Latin alphabet abbreviation for Beijing is "BJ".[35]


Early history

The earliest traces of human habitation in the Peking municipality were found in the caves of

Homo sapiens also lived there more recently, about 27,000 years ago.[36] Archaeologists have found neolithic settlements throughout the municipality, including in Wangfujing
, located in central Peking.

The first

state of Yan and made its capital.[38]

Early Imperial China

Tianning Pagoda, built around 1120 during the Liao dynasty

After the

Western Jin demoted the town, placing the prefectural seat in neighboring Zhuozhou. During the Sixteen Kingdoms period when northern China was conquered and divided by the Wu Hu, Jicheng was briefly the capital of the Xianbei Former Yan Kingdom.[40]

After China was reunified by the

Tianning Pagoda

The Liao fell to the

Line 10 subway. Remnants of the Yuan rammed earth wall still stand and are known as the Tucheng.[43]

Ming dynasty

One of the corner towers of the Forbidden City, built by the Yongle Emperor during the early Ming dynasty

In 1368, soon after declaring the new

Zhu Di, who was created "Prince of Yan".

Overlapping layout of Beijing during the Liao, Jin, Yuan and Ming dynasties

The early death of

Tian'anmen. On 28 October 1420, the city was officially designated the capital of the Ming dynasty in the same year that the Forbidden City was completed.[48] Beijing became the empire's primary capital, and Yingtian, also called Nanjing ("Southern Capital"), became the co-capital. (A 1425 order by Zhu Di's son, the Hongxi Emperor, to return the primary capital to Nanjing was never carried out: he died, probably of a heart attack, the next month. He was buried, like almost every Ming emperor to follow him, in an elaborate necropolis
to Beijing's north.)

By the 15th century, Beijing had essentially taken its current shape. The

Nantang Cathedral was later built upon the same site.[51]

The capture of Beijing by Li Zicheng's peasant army in 1644 ended the dynasty, but he and his Shun court abandoned the city without a fight when the Manchu army of Prince Dorgon arrived 40 days later.

Qing dynasty

Summer Palace is one of the several palatial gardens built by Qing emperors in the northwest suburb area.

Chinese novel Dream of the Red Chamber. Northwest of the city, Qing emperors built several large palatial gardens including the Old Summer Palace and the Summer Palace

During the

permanent diplomatic presences within the city. From 14 to 15 August 1900 the Battle of Peking was fought. This battle was part of the Boxer Rebellion
. The attempt by the
Chinese Christian converts, led to Beijing's reoccupation by eight foreign powers.[56] During the fighting, several important structures were destroyed, including the Hanlin Academy and the (new) Summer Palace
. A
peace agreement was concluded between the Eight-Nation Alliance and representatives of the Chinese government Li Hongzhang and Yikuang on 7 September 1901. The treaty required China to pay an indemnity of US$335 million (over US$4 billion in current dollars) plus interest over a period of 39 years. Also required was the execution or exile of government supporters of the Boxers and the destruction of Chinese forts and other defenses in much of northern China. Ten days after the treaty was signed the foreign armies left Beijing, although legation guards would remain there until World War II.[57]

With the treaty signed the

Qing dynasty over China was restored, albeit much weakened by the defeat it had suffered in the Boxer Rebellion and by the indemnity and stipulations of the peace treaty.[58]
The Dowager died in 1908 and the dynasty imploded in 1911.

Republic of China


The fomenters of the

Northern Expedition, the capital was formally moved to Nanjing in 1928. On 28 June the same year, Beijing's name was returned to Beiping (written at the time as "Peiping").[60][61]

On 7 July 1937, the 29th Army and the Japanese army in China exchanged fire at the

Wang Jingwei government based in Nanjing.[64]

People's Republic of China

Tiananmen during People's Republic of China

In the final phases of the

Tian'anmen. He restored the name of the city, as the new capital, to Beijing,[65] a decision that had been reached by the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference
just a few days earlier.

In the 1950s, the city began to expand beyond the old walled city and its surrounding neighborhoods, with heavy industries in

the west and residential neighborhoods in the north. Many areas of the Beijing city wall were torn down in the 1960s to make way for the construction of the Beijing Subway and the 2nd Ring Road

During the

Third Plenum of the 11th Party Congress in Beijing under the leadership of Deng Xiaoping reversed the verdicts against victims of the Cultural Revolution and instituted the "policy of reform and opening up."

Since the early 1980s, the urban area of Beijing has expanded greatly with the completion of the 2nd Ring Road in 1981 and the subsequent addition of the

Tiananmen Square protests of 1989.[73] The city has also hosted major international events, including the 2008 Summer Olympics and the 2015 World Championships in Athletics, and the 2022 Winter Olympics, making it the first city to ever host both Winter and Summer Olympics.[74]


Beijing is situated at the northern tip of the roughly triangular

Huairou District, are dominated by the Jundu Mountains, while the western part is framed by Xishan or the Western Hills. The Great Wall of China across the northern part of Beijing Municipality was built on the rugged topography to defend against nomadic incursions from the steppes. Mount Dongling, in the Western Hills and on the border with Hebei
, is the municipality's highest point, with an altitude of 2,303 metres (7,556 ft).

Major rivers flowing through the municipality, including the

Yangtze River

The urban area of Beijing, on the plains in the south-central of the municipality with elevation of 40 to 60 metres (130–200 feet), occupies a relatively small but expanding portion of the municipality's area. The city spreads out in concentric

Tian'anmen Square are at the center of Beijing, directly to the south of the Forbidden City, the former residence of the emperors of China. To the west of Tian'anmen is Zhongnanhai, the residence of China's current leaders. Chang'an Avenue
, which cuts between Tiananmen and the Square, forms the city's main east–west axis.

Beijing's pattern of development from the old inner city to its urban fringe are frequently described as "spreading like a pancake" (tan da bing).[75]: 135  This pattern of development is frequently cited as a reason for Beijing's urban problems.[75]: 135 


Precipitation averages around 528 mm (21 in) annually (Haidian District has an average annual precipitation of 586.3 mm (23 in)), with close to three-quarters of that total falling from June to August. With monthly percent possible sunshine ranging from 42% in July to 62% in January and February, the city receives 2,490.5 hours of bright sunshine annually. Extremes since 1951 have ranged from −27.4 °C (−17.3 °F) on 22 February 1966 to 41.9 °C (107.4 °F) on 24 July 1999 (unofficial record of 42.6 °C (108.7 °F) was set on 15 June 1942).[77][78]

Climate data for Beijing (1991–2020 normals, extremes 1951–present)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 14.3
Mean daily maximum °C (°F) 2.3
Daily mean °C (°F) −2.7
Mean daily minimum °C (°F) −6.9
Record low °C (°F) −22.8
Average precipitation mm (inches) 2.2
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.1 mm) 1.6 2.3 3.0 4.7 6.0 10.0 11.9 10.5 7.1 5.2 2.9 1.6 66.8
Average snowy days 2.8 2.5 1.3 0.1 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 1.7 2.8 11.2
relative humidity
43 42 40 43 47 58 69 71 64 58 54 46 53
Mean monthly sunshine hours 188.1 189.1 231.1 243.2 265.1 221.6 190.5 205.3 206.1 199.9 173.4 177.1 2,490.5
Percent possible sunshine 62 62 62 61 59 50 42 49 56 59 59 61 57
Average ultraviolet index 2 3 4 6 8 9 9 8 6 4 2 1 5
Source 1: China Meteorological Administration[79][80]
Source 2: Extremes[d] and Weather Atlas[84]


  1. ^ /bˈɪŋ/ bay-JING,[5][6] Chinese: 北京; pinyin: Běijīng; Mandarin pronunciation: [pèɪ.tɕíŋ]
  2. ^ [7] (/pˈkɪŋ/ pee-KING),[8]
  3. ^ When Europeans first came into sustained contact with China, "Pekin" and "Peking" were the most popular ways of romanizing the name of Beijing.[54][55]
  4. ^ All-time record high;[78] February record high;[81] May record high;[82] June record high[83]
Climate data for Haidian District (1991–2020 normals, extremes 1981–2010)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 14.2
Mean daily maximum °C (°F) 2.7
Daily mean °C (°F) −2.7
Mean daily minimum °C (°F) −7.1
Record low °C (°F) −20.2
Average precipitation mm (inches) 2.1
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.1 mm) 1.3 2.3 2.8 4.5 6.1 10.3 13.1 11.0 7.5 5.0 3.0 1.5 68.4
Average snowy days 2.4 2.2 1.1 0.1 0 0 0 0 0 0 1.5 2.4 9.7
relative humidity
43 42 41 43 48 60 72 73 67 62 56 46 54
Mean monthly sunshine hours 183.1 183.6 220.2 233.1 250.5 203.2 170.2 186.9 194.8 188.8 166.0 169.9 2,350.3
Percent possible sunshine 61 60 59 58 56 45 38 44 53 55 56 59 54
Source: China Meteorological Administration[85][86]

See or edit raw graph data.


A panorama of the Forbidden City, viewed from the Jingshan Park


The North-South Central Axis of Beijing City

Three styles of architecture are predominant in urban Beijing. First, there is the traditional architecture of imperial China, perhaps best exemplified by the massive

Beijing CBD in east Beijing such as the new CCTV Headquarters, in addition to buildings in other locations around the city such as the Beijing National Stadium and National Center for the Performing Arts

Since 2007, buildings in Beijing have received the CTBUH Skyscraper Award for best overall tall building twice, for the Linked Hybrid building in 2009 and the CCTV Headquarters in 2013. The CTBUH Skyscraper award for best tall overall building is given to only one building around the world every year.

In the early 21st century, Beijing has witnessed tremendous growth of new building constructions, exhibiting various modern styles from international designers, most pronounced in the CBD region. A mixture of both 1950s design and

neofuturistic style of architecture can be seen at the 798 Art Zone, which mixes the old with the new. Beijing's tallest building is the 528-meter China Zun

Wangjing SOHO

Beijing is famous for its

Feng Shui. They vary in width; some are so narrow only a few pedestrians can pass through at a time. Once ubiquitous in Beijing, siheyuans and hutongs are rapidly disappearing,[88] as entire city blocks of hutongs are replaced by high-rise buildings.[89] Residents of the hutongs are entitled to live in the new buildings in apartments of at least the same size as their former residences. Many complain, however, that the traditional sense of community and street life of the hutongs cannot be replaced,[90] and these properties are often government owned.[91]

Environmental issues

Beijing has a long history of

air temperatures, vertical air dilution and ozone levels were increased.[93] Because of the combined factors of urbanization and pollution caused by burning of fossil fuel, Beijing is often affected by serious environmental problems, which lead to health issues of many inhabitants. In 2013 heavy smog struck Beijing and most parts of northern China, impacting a total of 600 million people. After this "pollution shock" air pollution became an important economic and social concern in China. After that the government of Beijing announced measures to reduce air pollution, for example by lowering the share of coal from 24% in 2012 to 10% in 2017, while the national government ordered heavily polluting vehicles to be removed from 2015 to 2017 and increased its efforts to transition the energy system to clean sources.[94]

Air quality

Joint research between American and Chinese researchers in 2006 concluded that much of the city's pollution comes from surrounding cities and provinces. On average 35–60% of the ozone can be traced to sources outside the city. Shandong Province and Tianjin Municipality have a "significant influence on Beijing's air quality",[95] partly due to the prevailing south/southeasterly flow during the summer and the mountains to the north and northwest.

In preparation for the

emission standard.[101]

Coal burning accounts for about 40% of the PM 2.5 in Beijing and is also the chief source of nitrogen and sulphur dioxide.[102] Since 2012, the city has been converting coal-fired power stations to burn natural gas[103] and aims to cap annual coal consumption at 20 million tons. In 2011, the city burned 26.3 million tons of coal, 73% of which for heating and power generation and the remainder for industry.[103] Much of the city's air pollutants are emitted by neighboring regions.[102] Coal consumption in neighboring Tianjin is expected to increase from 48 to 63 million tons from 2011 to 2015.[104] Hebei Province burned over 300 million tons of coal in 2011, more than all of Germany, of which only 30% were used for power generation and a considerable portion for steel and cement making.[105] Power plants in the coal-mining regions of Shanxi, Inner Mongolia and Shaanxi, where coal consumption has tripled since 2000, and Shandong also contribute to air pollution in Beijing.[102] Shandong, Shanxi, Hebei and Inner Mongolia, respectively rank from first to fourth, among Chinese provinces by coal consumption.[104] There were four major coal-fired power plants in the city to provide electricity as well as heating during the winter. The first one (Gaojing Thermal Power Plant) was shut down in 2014.[106] Another two were shut in March 2015. The last one (Huaneng Thermal Power Plant) would be shut in 2016.[107] Between 2013 and 2017, the city planned to reduce 13 million tons of coal consumption and cap coal consumption to 15 million tons in 2015.[107]

The government sometimes uses

cloud-seeding measures to increase the likelihood of rain showers in the region to clear the air prior to large events, such as prior to the 60th anniversary parade in 2009 as well as to combat drought conditions in the area.[108] More recently, however, the government has increased its usage of such measures as closing factories temporarily and implementing greater restrictions for cars on the road, as in the case of "APEC blue" and "parade blue," short periods during and immediately preceding the APEC China 2014 and the 2015 China Victory Day Parade, respectively.[109]
During and prior to these events, Beijing's air quality improved dramatically, only to fall back to unhealthy levels shortly after.

On 8 and 9 December 2015 Beijing had its first smog alert which shut down a majority of the industry and other commercial businesses in the city.[110] Later in the month another smog "red alert" was issued.[111]

According to Beijing's environmental protection bureau's announcement in November 2016, starting from 2017 highly polluting old cars will be banned from being driven whenever Smog "red alerts" are issued in the city or neighboring regions.[112]

In recent years, there has been measurable reductions in pollutants after the "war on pollution" was declared in 2014, with Beijing seeing a 35% reduction in fine particulates in 2017[113] and further reduction by 2020.[75]: 52  The primary factors behind this reduction were replacing coal power with natural gas and cleaning up polluting industrial facilities in the Beijing area.[114]: 169–170 

Beijing's annual average concentration of major airborne fine particulate matter, or PM2.5, declined to 30 micrograms per cubic meter in 2022, the best air quality for the city since 2013.[115]


Due to Beijing's high level of air pollution, there are various readings by different sources on the subject. Daily pollution readings at 27 monitoring stations around the city are reported on the website of the Beijing Environmental Protection Bureau (BJEPB).

The American Embassy of Beijing also reports hourly fine particulate (PM2.5) and ozone levels on Twitter.[117] Since the BJEPB and US Embassy measure different pollutants according to different criteria, the pollution levels and the impact to human health reported by the BJEPB are often lower than that reported by the US Embassy.[117]

The smog is causing harm and danger to the population. The air pollution does directly result in significant impact on the morbidity rate of cardiovascular disease and respiratory disease in Beijing.[118] Exposure to large concentrations of polluted air can cause respiratory and cardiovascular problems, emergency room visits, and even death.[119]

Dust storms

Dust from the erosion of deserts in northern and northwestern China results in seasonal dust storms that plague the city; the Beijing Weather Modification Office sometimes artificially induces rainfall to fight such storms and mitigate their effects.[120] In the first four months of 2006 alone, there were no fewer than eight such storms.[121] In April 2002, one dust storm alone dumped nearly 50,000 tons of dust onto the city before moving on to Japan and Korea.[122]


The municipal government is regulated by the Municipal Committee of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), led by the Beijing CCP Secretary. The Municipal CCP Committee issues administrative orders, collects taxes, manages the economy, and directs a standing committee of the Municipal People's Congress in making policy decisions and overseeing the local government. Since 1987, all CCP Secretary of Beijing is also a member of the Politburo.

Government officials include the

mayor (Chinese: 市长) and vice-mayor. Numerous bureaus focus on law, public security, and other affairs. Additionally, as the capital of China, Beijing houses all of the important national governmental and political institutions, including the National People's Congress.[123]

Administrative divisions

Beijing Municipality currently comprises 16 administrative

were upgraded to districts.

Administrative divisions of Beijing
Division code[124] Division Area in km2[125] Total population 2020[126] Urban area
population 2020[126]
Seat Postal code Subdivisions[127][full citation needed]
[n 1]
Residential communities
110000 Beijing 16406.16 21,893,095 19,166,433
100000 149 143 38 2538 3857
41.82 708,829 Jingshan Subdistrict 100000 17     216  
50.33 1,106,214
Jinrong Street Subdistrict
100000 15     259  
454.78 3,452,460 Chaowai Subdistrict 100000 24   19 358 5
305.53 2,019,764 2,003,652 Fengtai Subdistrict 100000 16 2 3 254 73
84.38 567,851 Lugu Subdistrict 100000 9     130  
430.77 3,133,469 3,058,731 Haidian Subdistrict 100000 22 7   603 84
1447.85 392,606 358,945 Dayu Subdistrict 102300 4 9   124 179
1994.73 1,312,778 1,025,320 Gongchen Subdistrict 102400 8 14 6 108 462
905.79 1,840,295 1,361,403 Beiyuan Subdistrict 101100 6 10 1 40 480
1019.51 1,324,044 875,261 Shengli Subdistrict 101300 6 19   61 449
1342.47 2,269,487 1,856,115 Chengbei Subdistrict 102200 8 14   180 303
1036.34 1,993,591 1,622,382 Xingfeng Subdistrict 102600 5 14   64 547
2122.82 441,040 334,682 Longshan Subdistrict 101400 2 12 2 27 286
948.24 457,313 278,501 Binhe Subdistrict 101200 2 14 2 23 275
2225.92 527,683 350,398 Gulou Subdistrict 101500 2 17 1 57 338
1994.89 345,671 205,689 Rulin Subdistrict 102100 3 11 4 34 376
  1. Ethnic townships
    & other township related subdivisions.


Beijing's 16 county-level divisions (districts) are further subdivided into 273 lower third-level administrative units at the

ethnic townships and 125 subdistricts
. Towns within Beijing Municipality but outside the urban area include (but are not limited to):

Several place names in Beijing end with mén (), meaning "gate", as they were the locations of gates in the former Beijing city wall. Other place names end in cūn (), meaning "village", as they were originally villages outside the city wall.

Judiciary and procuracy


basic people's court (one for each of the municipality's districts and counties), one basic railway transport court, and one Internet court. The Beijing No. 1 Intermediate People's Court in Shijingshan oversees the basic courts of Haidian, Shijingshan, Mentougou, Changping and Yanqing.[128] The Beijing No. 2 Intermediate People's Court in Fengtai oversees the basic courts of Dongcheng, Xicheng, Fengtai, Fangshan and Daxing.[128] The Beijing No. 3 Intermediate People's Court in Laiguangying, is the newest of the three intermediate people's courts and opened on 21 August 2013.[128] It oversees the district courts of Chaoyang, Tongzhou, Shunyi, Huairou, Pinggu and Miyun.[128][129] Each court in Beijing has a corresponding people's procuratorate


As of 2022, Beijing's nominal GDP was CN¥4.16 trillion ($619 billion in nominal, $1.016 trillion in PPP), about 3.44% of the country's GDP and ranked 13th among province-level administrative units; its nominal GDP per capita was US$28,258 (CN¥190,059) and ranked the 1st in the country.[130][131] It also ranks the tenth largest in the metropolitan economies in the world.[132]

Due to the concentration of

state owned enterprises in the national capital, Beijing in 2013 had more Fortune Global 500 Company headquarters than any other city in the world.[133] As of August 2022, Beijing has 54 Fortune Global 500 companies, more than Japan (47), the third-place country after China (145) and the United States (124).[134][135] Beijing has also been described as the "billionaire capital of the world".[136][137] In 2020, Beijing is the fifth wealthiest city in the world, with a total wealth amounts to $2 trillion.[138] Beijing is classified as an Alpha+ (global first-tier) city by the Globalization and World Cities Research Network, indicating its influence in the region and worldwide and making it one of the world's Top 10 major cities.[139] In the 2021 Global Financial Centres Index, Beijing was ranked as having the sixth-most competitive financial center in the world and fourth-most competitive in the whole Asia & Oceania region (behind Shanghai, Hong Kong and Singapore).[140]

As of 2021, Beijing was ranked first globally in terms of "Global City Competitiveness" in the 2020–2021 Global Urban Competitiveness Report jointly released by the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS) and the United Nations Programme for Human Settlements (UN-Habitat).[141]

Historical GDP of Beijing for 1978–present (SNA2008)[142]
(purchasing power parity of Chinese Yuan, as international dollar based on IMF WEO October 2022)[143]
Year CNY
Real growth
per capita*
per capita*
per capita*
Reference index:
to CNY
Reference index:
Int'l$. 1
to CNY
2021 4,026,960 624,190 957,432 8.5 183,980 28,517 43,742 6.4515 4.206
2020 3,594,330 521,099 846,920 1.1 164,158 23,799 38,680 6.8976 4.244
2019 3,544,510 513,809 835,575 6.1 161,776 23,451 38,137 6.8985 4.242
2018 3,310,600 500,287 782,833 6.7 150,962 22,813 35,697 6.6174 4.229
2017 2,988,300 442,593 714,221 6.8 136,172 20,168 32,546 6.7518 4.184
2016 2,704,120 407,106 677,894 6.9 123,391 18,577 30,932 6.6423 3.989
2015 2,477,910 397,841 640,121 6.9 113,692 18,253 29,370 6.2284 3.871
2014 2,292,600 373,217 609,846 7.4 106,732 17,375 28,394 6.1428 3.759
2013 2,113,460 341,255 576,818 7.7 100,569 16,240 27,448 6.1932 3.664
2012 1,902,470 301,381 534,252 7.7 92,758 14,694 26,048 6.3125 3.561
2011 1,718,880 266,130 487,764 8.1 86,246 13,353 24,474 6.4588 3.524
2010 1,496,400 221,050 440,910 10.4 78,307 11,568 23,544 6.7695 3.326
2009 1,290,900 188,977 407,481 10.0 71,059 10,402 22,430 6.8310 3.168
2008 1,181,310 170,093 369,969 9.0 68,541 9,869 21,466 6.9451 3.193
2007 1,042,550 137,105 343,736 14.4 63,629 8,368 20,979 7.6040 3.033
2006 838,700 105,208 290,308 12.8 53,438 6,703 18,497 7.9718 2.889
2005 714,980 87,281 249,296 12.3 47,182 5,760 16,451 8.1917 2.868
2000 327,780 38,809 118,148 12.0 22,054 3,022 8,081 8.2784 2.729
1995 151,620 18,156 55,275 12.0 12,762 1,529 4,653 8.3510 2.743
1990 50,080 10,470 29,184 5.2 4,635 969 2,701 4.7832 1.716
1985 25,710 8,755 18,312 8.7 2,643 972 1,882 2.9367 1.404
1980 13,910 9,283 9,273 11.8 1,544 1,009 1,029 1.4984 1.500
1978 10,880 6,462 10.5 1,257 797 1.684

* Per-capita GDP is based on mid-year population.

Sector composition

The Taikoo Li Sanlitun shopping arcade is a destination for locals and visitors.

The city has a

primary sector (agriculture, mining) at 0.26%.[130] The services sector is broadly diversified with professional services, wholesale and retail, information technology, commercial real estate, scientific research, and residential real estate each contributing at least 6% to the city's economy in 2022.[130][144]

The single largest sub-sector remains industry, whose share of overall output has shrunk to 12.1% in 2022.

Capital Steel to neighboring Hebei province had begun in 2005.[146][147] In 2013, output of automobiles, aerospace products, semiconductors, pharmaceuticals, and food processing all increased.[144]

In the farmland around Beijing, vegetables and fruits have displaced grain as the primary crops under cultivation.[144] In 2013, the tonnage of vegetable, edible fungus and fruit harvested was over three times that of grain.[144] In 2013, overall acreage under cultivation shrank along with most categories of produce as more land was reforested for environmental reasons.[144]

Economic zones

Beijing CBD
Haidian District

In 2006, the city government identified six high-end economic output zones around Beijing as the primary engines for local economic growth. In 2012, the six zones produced 43.3% of the city's GDP, up from 36.5% in 2007.[148][149] The six zones are:

  1. Zhongguancun, China's silicon village in Haidian District northwest of the city, is home to both established and start-up tech companies. In the first two quarters of 2014, 9,895 companies registered in the six zones, among which 6,150 were based in Zhongguancun.[150] Zhongguancun is also the center of Beijing-Tianjin-Shijiazhuang Hi-Tech Industrial Belt.
  2. Beijing Financial Street, in Xicheng District on the west side of the city between Fuxingmen and Fuchengmen, is lined with headquarters of large state banks and insurance companies. The country's financial regulatory agencies including the central bank, bank regulator, securities regulator, and foreign exchange authority are located in the neighborhood.
  3. Beijing Central Business District (CBD), is actually located to the east of downtown, near the embassies along the eastern Third Ring Road between Jianguomenwai and Chaoyangmenwai. The CBD is home to most of the city's skyscraper office buildings
    . Most of the city's foreign companies and professional service firms are based in the CBD.
  4. Beijing Economic and Technological Development Area, better known as Yizhuang, is an industrial park the straddles the southern Fifth Ring Road in Daxing District. It has attracted pharmaceutical, information technology, and materials engineering companies.[151]
  5. Beijing Airport Economic Zone was created in 1993 and surrounds the Beijing Capital International Airport in Shunyi District northeast of the city. In addition to logistics, airline services, and trading firms, this zone is also home to Beijing's automobile assembly plants.
  6. Beijing Olympic Center Zone surrounds the Olympic Green due north of downtown and is developing into an entertainment, sports, tourism and business convention center.

Shijingshan, on the western outskirts of the city, is a traditional heavy industrial base for steel-making.[152]
Chemical plants are concentrated in the far eastern suburbs.

Less legitimate enterprises also exist. Urban Beijing is known for being a center of infringed goods; anything from the latest designer clothing to DVDs can be found in markets all over the city, often marketed to expatriates and international visitors.[153]


Historical population
YearPop.±% p.a.
Population size may be affected by changes on administrative divisions.

In 2021, Beijing had a total population of 21.89 million within the municipality, of which 19.16 million (87.5 percent) resided in urban districts or suburban townships and 2.73 million (12.5) lived in rural villages.[130] The encompassing metropolitan area was estimated by the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) to have, as of 2010, a population of 24.9 million.[154][155]

Within China, the city ranked

third in municipal population after Shanghai and Chongqing. Beijing also ranks among the most populous cities in the world, a distinction the city has held for much of the past 800 years, especially during the 15th to early 19th centuries when it was the largest city in the world

About 13 million of the city's residents in 2013 had local

hukou permits, which entitles them to permanent residence in Beijing.[144] The remaining 8 million residents had hukou permits elsewhere and were not eligible to receive some social benefits provided by the Beijing municipal government.[144]

The population increased in 2013 by 455,000 or about 7% from the previous year and continued a decade-long trend of rapid growth.[144] The total population in 2004 was 14.213 million.[156] The population gains are driven largely by migration. The population's rate of natural increase in 2013 was a mere 0.441%, based on a birth rate of 8.93 and a mortality rate of 4.52.[144] The gender balance was 51.6% males and 48.4% females.[144]

Working age people account for nearly 73.6% of the population.[130] Compared to 2004, residents age 0–14 as a proportion of the population dropped from 9.95% to 9.92% in 2013, but again increased to 12.1% in 2021.[130] Residents over the age of 65 declined from 11.12% to 8.58%, but increased to 14.2% in 2021.[130] From 2002 to 2011, the percentage of city residents with at least some college education nearly doubled, from 20.4% to 37.3%, and further increased to 49.1% by 2021.[130] About 66.4% have senior secondary school education and 88.2% had reached middle school.[130]

According to the 2010 census, nearly 96% of Beijing's population are ethnic

Mongol (37,000) and Tujia (24,000) constitute the five largest groups.[158] In addition, there were 8,045 Hong Kong residents, 500 Macau residents, and 7,772 Taiwan residents along with 91,128 registered foreigners living in Beijing.[157] A study by the Beijing Academy of Sciences estimates that in 2010 there were on average 200,000 foreigners living in Beijing on any given day including students, business travellers and tourists that are not counted as registered residents.[159]

In 2017 the Chinese government implemented population controls for Beijing and Shanghai to fight what it called the "big city disease" which includes congestion, pollution, and shortages of education and health care services. From this policy, Beijing's population declined by 20,000 from 2016 to 2017.

Xiong'an New Area, the transfer to the latter expected to include 300,000-500,000 people working in government research, universities, and corporate headquarters.[161][162]

Education and research