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Harbin

Haerbin
Administration
Full nameHarbin
Official name哈尔滨市
Native name哈尔滨
Settlement typeSub-provincial city
CountryPeople's Republic of China
ProvinceHeilongjiang
County-level divisions19
Government
Secretary Municipal Committee of the CPCGai Ruyin 盖如垠 (since August , 2009)
MayorZhang Xiaolian 张效廉 (since February, 2007)
Geography
Total Area20484.2 sq mi (53068 km2)
Urban Area806.4 sq mi (2089 km2)
Metro Area1650.2 sq mi (4275 km2)
Elevation488 ft (148.7 m)
Demography
Total Population10635971
Density (pop.)auto/km2 (0/sq mi)
Urban (pop.)4517549
Metro (pop.)5282083
Other information
Time zoneChina Standard Time (UTC+8)
Postal code150000
Area code451
License plate prefixes黑A
GDP (2008)CNY 286.82 billion
- per capitaCNY 29,012

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Harbin ( -cmnxɑ́ɻpín); Manchu language: , Harbin; Russian: Харби́н Kharbin ), is the capital and largest city of Heilongjiang Province in Northeast China, lying on the southern bank of the Songhua River. With a population of 9.87 million, it is the tenth largest city in China, serving as a key political, economic, scientific, cultural and communications hub in the Northeast.

Harbin is originally a Manchu word meaning "a place for drying fishing nets". It is known for its bitterly cold winters and is often called the "Ice City". Harbin is well known for its beautiful ice sculptures in winter and plays an important part in Sino-Russian trade. In the 1920s, the city was considered China's fashion capital as new designs from Paris and Moscow reached there first before arriving in Shanghai.


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