Tianjin, alternately romanized as Tientsin, is a municipality and a coastal metropolis in Northern China on the shore of the Bohai Sea. It is one of the nine national central cities in Mainland China, with a total population estimated at 15,621,200. It is also the world’s 29th-largest agglomeration (between Chengdu and Rio de Janeiro) and the 11th-most populous city proper.
It is governed as one of the four municipalities under the direct administration of the Chinese central government and is thus under direct administration of the State Council. It borders Hebei Province and Beijing Municipality, bounded to the east by the Bohai Gulf portion of the Yellow Sea. Part of the Bohai Economic Rim, it is the largest coastal city in northern China.
Tianjin is the fourth largest in China, after Shanghai, Beijing, and Guangzhou in terms of the urban population. In terms of administrative area population, it ranks fifth in Mainland China. The walled city was built in 1404. As a treaty port since 1860, Tianjin has been a major seaport and gateway to Beijing. During the Boxer Rebellion, the city was the seat of the Tianjin Provisional Government. Under the Qing dynasty and the Republic of China, it became one of the largest cities in the region. At that time, numerous European-style buildings and mansions were constructed in concessions, many of which are well-preserved.
After the founding of the People’s Republic of China, Tianjin suffered a depression due to the policy of the central government and the Tangshan earthquake but recovered from the 1990s. Nowadays, it is a dual-core city, with its main urban area (including the old city) located along the Hai River, which connects to the Yellow and Yangtze Rivers via the Grand Canal; and Binhai, an adjacent New Area urban core located east of the old city, on the coast of the Bohai Gulf.
As of the end of 2010, around 285 Fortune 500 companies have set up base in Binhai. Since 2010, Yujiapu Financial District has become known as China’s Manhattan, and the city is considered one of the world’s top 100 cities, including in the Global Financial Centres Index.[