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Overview of Jilin Province

Jilin Province is located between Liaoning and Heilongjiang provinces, bordering Russia to the east and the Korean Peninsula to the south across the Tumen River.

Major Cities

Capital: Changchun

Others: Beicheng, Jilin City, Siping, Tonghua, Yanji


As of 2012, Jilin’s population is 27.5 million. Ethnic minorities (e.g. Koreans, Manchus, Mongolians, Hui, Xibo) make up about 9 percent of the population. Jilin is home to over 1 million ethnic Koreans, 800,000 of whom reside in the Yanbian Korean Autonomous Prefecture, which borders North Korea.

Political Leaders

Party Secretary: Wang Rulin 王儒林
Governor: Bayin Chaolu 巴音朝鲁
Deputy Secretary: Zhu Yanfeng 竺延风
Vice Governors:
        Ma Junqing 马俊清
        Chen Weigen 陈伟根
        Wang Huawen王化文
        Huang Guanchun 黄关春
        Gu Chunli谷春立
        Sui Zhongcheng 隋忠诚
CPPCC Chairperson: Huang Yanming 黄燕明
Communist Youth League: Cheng Long 程龙

Changchun Party Secretary: Gao Guangbin 高广滨
Changchun Mayor: Jiang Zhiying 姜治莹

Economic Overview

Jilin’s GDP reached 1,193.78 billion RMB (USD 198.96 billion) in 2012. The province’s GDP growth rate in 2012 was 13.4 percent, compared with China’s national GDP growth rate of 10.1 percent. Jilin’s main industries include automobile and rail vehicle production, petrochemicals, pharmaceuticals, metallurgy, equipment manufacturing, textiles, and agriculture. Changchun-based First Auto Works is China’s largest carmaker and currently has joint ventures with Mazda, Toyota, Audi, and GM. Jilin is also one of China’s top producers of corn, lying along the “golden corn belt.” Six of China’s top ten grain-producing counties are in Jilin. Jilin province is also included in the central government’s 2003 “Revitalize the Northeast” initiative, aimed at further reforming and privatizing state-owned enterprises and updating Jilin’s industrial structure.

In 2012, the total value of Jilin’s foreign trade was 24.56 billion USD, of which imports accounted for 18.6 billion. Jilin is somewhat disadvantaged when it comes to international trade because the province is landlocked and lacking navigable waterways during winter months. Therefore, Jilin is very focused on investing in infrastructure in the North Korean city, Ranson, with the intention of gaining access to North Korea’s ice-free Rajin sea port. In 2012, trade with the U.S. only represented 1% of the foreign trade passing through Jilin’s capital, Changchun (roughly 96 million USD). Current leading American investors in the province include WalMart, Pepsi-Cola, Johnson Controls, Dupont, Delphi, and Cargill.

2012 GDP per capita: RMB 43,412

GDP Composition by Sector:
        Agriculture: 4.9%
        Industry: 62.9%
        Services: 32.2%

Main Products: automobiles, oil, metal, petrochemical products, processed grains

Exports: garments, automobiles, auto spare parts, plywood

Main Export Destinations: South Korea, North Korea, Russia, U.S.

Imports: automobiles, auto space parts, measurement instruments, automation appliances, iron ore

Main Import Sources: Japan, South Korea, North Korea

Natural Resources: shale oil, Molybdenum, nickel, magnesium, diatomite

Arable Land: 15,830 square miles

Commercial Opportunities

The best export opportunities for U.S. companies are in automobiles and automobile parts, as well as in food processing and packaging. A breadbasket of China, Jilin is also seeking technology and equipment for downstream food processing. Jilin is currently focused on upgrading its petrochemical industry from initial processing to fine chemical production. Jilin is also working on power infrastructure upgrades. Finally, tourism is an emerging focus in Jilin.


Jilin Province ranks higher in education than either of its northeast neighbors, with excellent access to primary and tertiary education. Prominent universities in Jilin include Jilin University, Northeast Normal University, and Yanbian University. A large number of student and exchange scholar visa applicants to the U.S. come from Jilin University, which has a number of established exchange programs with American universities.