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Zibo is a prefecture-level city in central Shandong Province of China. It borders the provincial capital of Jinan to the west, Laiwu and Tai'an to the southwest, Linyi to the south, Weifang to the east, Dongying to the northeast, and Binzhou the north.

Located in the middle part of Shandong Province, Zibo is an important transportation hub.Zibo governs 5 districts (Zhangdian, Zichuan, Boshan, Zhoucun and Linzi) and each of these districts has a distinct downtown area of their own. The T-shaped city has a total area of 5,938 square kilometers-three counties (Huantai, Gaoqing and Yiyuan) inclued; the total population of the city is 4.18 million, of which 2.76 million are in the city proper.

Zibo is well known as the historical state of Qi, which had ever been the most populous city in the east about 2000 years ago. Zibo is the birth place of ancient football Cuju, which according to FIFA, was the earliest form of the sport. Pu Songling, a world famous short story writer of Ching Dynasty, is one of the city's numerous celebrities born and bred here ancient and modern times. As the birthplace of Qi Culture and because of the abundant nature resources, it is an excellent tourist city in China. Manufacturing industry holds an important place of the city's economy and of course it has contributed a lot not only to the city itself but also to the whole country since the founding of New China. Some people associate Zibo with ceramics sometimes due to its powerful forces in ceramics manufacturing.

Zibo enjoys fame as of Famous Industrial City, Capital of the Ceramics Production Base and City of Petrochemical Industry. After one hundred years of development, Zibo has a solid industrial foundation. The dominant industries are: petrochemical industry, pharmaceuticals, metallurgy, building materials, machinery and textile, etc. High and new-technology industries, such as new materials, fine chemicals, electronics and information, and biological medicines, are developing rapidly.

According to 2007/2008 Global City Competitiveness Report released by Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Zibo was among the top 20 cities in the world who enjoy the fastest economic growth between 2001 and 2005. According to Oriental Outlook MagazineIssue No.1, 2009, Zibo ranks No.1 on the list of cities with reasonable real estate prices in China, also No.2 on the list of cities with good public security

Zibo is in the center of Shandong Province, neighboring Mt. Tai in the south and backing the Yellow River in the north. It is also bordered by hot coastal tourist cities, Qingdao, Yantai, and Weihai in the east, and the capital city of the province, Jinan in the west. Zibo is located in the transition zone between mountainous area in central Shangdong and the North China Plain.Its southern area is covered with mid-sized mountains, while the center is hilly. The city's northern territory descends into plains. The ratio among moutains,hill and plain is 42%, 29.9% and 28.1%. With the Yihe River originating itself in the southern mountain area, and Yellow River flowing across the northern area, the city has comparatively abundant water resources. The workable reserve of ground water is 1.24 tons/day.

Zibo is located in a warm, temperate zone, and bears a semi-humid and semi-dry continental climate.  Like other major cities in North China, Zibo has four distinct seasons. January and July are respectively the coldest and hottest month during a year. Zibo enjoy 180 to 220 frost-free days and average annual Hours of Sunshine is 2542.6 to 2832.6 hours. Annual average precipitation of Zibo is 25.2 inches (640.5 mm).

Zibo was once the capital of the ancient State of Qi, the most prosperous state during the Spring and Autumn and the Warring States Periods over 2,000 years ago in China. Lord Huan of Qi, ruler of Qi, appointed Guan Zhong, the famous thinker and economist, as his prime minister, and adopted Guan's thoughts and policies to administer his country, reform the economic system and develop relations with other states, After scores of years, Qi became the strongest state for its economic and military strength, and was named as the "state with one thousand chariots" and the "head of the five strongest states". The culture and education undertakings were rather developed in Qi. Both poetry and music were of high level. Linzi District remained its capital for as long as 638 years, and was the biggest city in the orient.

As the birthplace of the Qi Culture, Zibo has quite a number of cultural scenic spots. In the national city of history and culture, Linzi District, the ruins of the ancient Qi city, the pit for burying the funerary horses and chariots and other famous cultural relics and historic sites, have been discovered and unearthed. All of them exemplify the past prosperity of the Qi State. The ancient city of Qi, one of the first batch of cultural relics protection units, is rich in cultural relics and historical sites, and, therefore, has won the title of the "Underground Museum".

In 2004, FIFA President Sepp Blatter visited Zibo to celebrate FIFA's 100 year anniversary. FIFA has since then recognized the city as the birthplace of football.

Culture and Artware
Boshan colored glaze is the wonderful work in Shan Dong Province. The history of production of colored glaze in Bo Shan is very long and better known. In the years of Hong Wu of Ming Dynasty, the emperor's servants set up "Out Factory" to produce colored glaze for imperial family's use such as "blue and green curtain". By the end of Ming Dynasty, the folk colored glaze was produced and developed day by day, too. In the year of Jingtai there were four big stoves in Xi Yejie Street to produce enamel material. Before and after the period of Jiajing, the colored glaze products such as pearl light, pearl rejecting, bed-curtain and mosquito net hook and so on were made by the master of Bo Shan and gradually form the colored glaze trade. In 1617(the 46th year of Wan Li), some people led by Sun Yanshou initiated to organize the guild of colored glaze which is the first organization in Yanshan Town. The colored glaze products returned the transportation and sale to Beijing and the southern parts of China besides selling in locality.

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