Beijing is the capital of the People's Republic of China and the nation's political and cultural centre. The city had been the capital of the Jin, Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties until 1911. In the early 1920s, Beijing became the cradle of China's new democratic revolution. The May Fourth Movement againts imperialism and feudalism began here in 1919.

Beijing was known as Peking by the western world before 1949. Although it is an ancient city and was often used as the capital during various dynasties, Beijing's modern history as a capital began in the Yuan dynasty (1271-1368) with Kublai Khan, the grandson of Genghis Khan. Marco Polo made Beijing his base when he visited and travelled around China. Most of what we see today in Beijing was built during the Ming dynasty (1368-1644).


Beijing City is situated in the north-eastern part of China and is an independently administered municipal district. The climate in Beijing is defined as "continental monsoon", with cold and dry winters. January is the coldest month (-4 degrees Celcius) and January is the warmest (26 degrees Celcius). Winter usually begins towards the end of October. The summer months, June to August, are hot and wet with about 40 percent of the annual precipitation.


Business in Beijing

Business Hours

Offices in Beijing generally open from 8.30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Government-stipulated workdays are from Monday to Friday. Banking hours and days vary from bank to bank in Beijing. However, most Chinese banks are open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. or 5 p.m. and have branches that are open on Saturdays and Sundays. Shops generally open at 9 a.m. and close at between 7 p.m. daily.

Business Attire

Normal western business attire is considered appropriate for doing business in China.

Major Trading Partners

  1. United States
  2. Japan
  3. Germany
  4. South Korea
  5. Netherlands
  6. United Kingdom
  7. Singapore
  8. Taiwan
  9. Russia

Major Industries

  • Iron and steel production
  • Machine-building
  • Production of coal, arnaments, textiles and apparel
  • Production of petroleum, cement, chemical fertilisers and footwear
  • Production of toys, cars, consumer electronics and telecommunication equipment
  • Food processing

Beijing Ethnic Groups

The permanent residents of Beijing come from all of China's 56 ethnic groups. The Han nationality accounts for 96.5 percent of the total Beijing's population.

People in Beijing

Beijing's people are quite friendly and outgoing in dealing with foreign guests. They enjoy interacting with foreigners. However, they are often quite reserved and cautious when dealing with foreigners in formal situations or in initial business relationships.