Yulin City, located in the north of Shaanxi Province, P.R. China at 36o57'–35o.35'N and 107o.28'–111o.15'E, covers an area of 43,578 square kilometers and has jurisdiction over one district and eleven countries. The Yellow River, known as the mother river of the Chinese nation, runs along the eastern border of the district for 270 kilometers, and has nurtured the Yulin people throughout the area's 5,000-year history. A section of the Great Wall constructed during the Ming Dynasty extends for 700 kilometers in the region and has witnessed the historical blending of Loess Plateau culture with Mongolian Nomadic Culture. Yulin has been a hotly contested strategic point for centuries. Its importance as a strategic point and as a place where multiple national cultures came into contact enabled Yulin City to evolve a unique architectural style and cultural tradition.
The original city was built during the Ming and Qing dynasties, and the fact that the original layout remains intact means that many precious ancient buildings, valuable historical relics and unique traditional arts have been well preserved. Yulin City has been included on the list of China's Famous Historical and Cultural Cities by the country's State Council.
In the 1980s, Yulin once again attracted the attention of the world, following the discovery of unusually rich oil, coal, and mineral deposits. Up to now, 48 kinds of energy and mineral resources under 8 categories have been found to exist in this region. The proven coal reserve is 166 billion tons, and the expected reserve is 271.4 billion tons. The Shenmu-Fugu Coalfield is one of the world's seven largest coalfields. The proven natural gas reserve is 747.4 billion m3and its expected reserve is 5 trillion m3. The proven petroleum reserve is 0.3 billion tons, and its expected reserve is 0.6 billion tons. The proven lake salt reserve is 3.3 million tons, and its expected reserve is 60 million tons. The proven rock salt reserve is 885.4 billion tons, and its expected reserve is 6,000 billion tons, about 26% of China's rock salt deposits. Yulin is also rich in 40 other mineral resources such as kaolin, bauxite, quartz sand, and limestone. In the year of 1998 the State Planning Commission officially listed Yulin as one of the state-level bases of energy resources and heavy chemical industry. Along with the building of this state-level base of energy resources and heavy chemical industry, the economy of Yulin has developed at a rapid pace. In recent years the growth rates of the local GDP, revenue and fixed assets investment have exceeded provincial and national averages.
Along with the rapid development, the regional economy has a tremendous improvement in infrastructure. There are now eight railway links leading into Yulin district: the Taiyuan-Baotou Railway, the Xi'an-Shenmu Railway, the Shenmu-Baoji Railway, the Yulin-Xi'an Railway, the Beijing-Baotou Railway, the Hohhot-Xi'an Railway, the Baotou-Xi'an Railway, and the Baotou-Handan Railway.
Rapid development has also led to a network of highways, with more than ten major highways traversing the region. Highway Density has reached 19.1 km/100km. In addition, the new airport offers flights to Beijing, Xi'an, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Guangzhou, Chengdu, Kunming, Yinchuan, Taiyuan, and Baotou. Communications are convenient and modern, with telephone, internet, and international postal services all easily accessible. The city's physical appearance has undergone considerable changes recently. Four large public squares have been added, including Century Square, Lingxiao Square, Railway Square, and Yangguang (Sunshine) Square; one shopping street has been renovated; roads, streets and bridges in the urban areas have been repaired or broadened; the supply systems of water, heating and natural gas have been improved. Finally Yulin continues its transformation into a large and modern city, and it is undertaking to remake itself as an environmentally friendly urban center.
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