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Shànghǎi Shì
Shanghai montage.png
Shanghai (China)
Coordinates 31 ° 14 ′  N , 121 ° 28 ′  E Coordinates: 31 ° 14 ′  N , 121 ° 28 ′  E
The administrative urban area of ​​Shanghai - in the north the core city (Puxi)
The administrative urban area of ​​Shanghai - in the north the core city (Puxi)
Basic data
Country People's Republic of China
region East china
Government immediate city Shanghai
status Government immediate city
structure 16 districts,
107 large municipalities, 104 street districts, 2 municipalities
height 4 m
surface 6,340.5 km²
Residents 23,019,148 (2010) ( 24. )
density 3,630.5  Ew. / km²
Post Code 200,000
Telephone code (+86) 21
Time zone UTC + 8
License Plate 沪 A
mayor Gong Zheng (龚 正)

Shanghai or Shanghai ( Chinese  上海 , Pinyin Shànghǎi ? / I ) is the most important industrial city in the People's Republic of China and one of the largest cities in the world . Audio file / audio sample

In addition to the city ​​center with around 15 million inhabitants, Shanghai also includes numerous surrounding districts up to 50 km away with a further approx. 8 million inhabitants. While the inner city has a high density of buildings and a closed form of settlement, a rural, more provincial settlement structure dominates in the outskirts. Of the total of around 23 million inhabitants (2010 census), 15.9 million are registered residents with permanent residence ( 戶口  /  户口 , hùkǒu ) and 7.1 million temporary residents ( 流動 人口  /  流动 人口 , liúdòng rénkǒu ) with a temporary residence permit ( 暫住 證  /  暂住 证 , zànzhùzhèng ).

Shanghai is a city under direct government control , which means it is directly subordinate to the central government and its status corresponds to that of a province. Its area of ​​only 6,340.5  km² (2012) is becoming slightly larger due to ongoing land reclamation on the shallow bank of the Yangtze River funnel (especially in the southeastern tip).

The port of Shanghai is 31,740,000 TEUs per year, the largest container port in the world (as of 2011). In terms of total throughput, the port is also the largest with 736 million tons of goods in 2012.

Shanghai, Pudong skyline in the morning, August 2016

The city is an important traffic junction and an important cultural and educational center with numerous universities, colleges, research institutions, theaters and museums.


The name of the city is made up of the Chinese characters 上 (shàng) meaning “on”, “high up”, “placed above” and 海 (hǎi) = “ sea ” and can literally be used as “[city] above the sea ”.

For the German language, the Duden recommends the spelling Shanghai . Colloquially, Shanghai is also known as the “gateway to the world”, “Paris of the East” ( 東方 巴黎  /  东方 巴黎 , Dōngfāng Bālí ), “dragon head metropolis ” ( 龍頭  /  龙头 , Lóngtóu ) or “Pearl of the Orient ” ( 東方 明珠  /  东方 明珠 , Dōngfāng Míngzhū ) called.

The official Chinese abbreviations for Shanghai are (  /  ) and Shēn ( ). The short name - after a fishing device used in ancient times (a kind of fish fence made of bamboo) - is also used as a license plate. The name Shēn refers to the noble Lord Chunshen ( 春申君 , Chūnshēn Jūn ), a politician and general from the Warring States period .


Satellite image of Shanghai, Landsat 7 August 15, 2005
Shanghai, Pudong skyline at night, August 2016
Pudong on New Year's Eve 2011/2012
View from the Shanghai Science and Technology Museum

Geographical location

Shanghai is located in the mouth of the Yangtze River on the Huangpu River at latitude 31 ° 14 'north and longitude 121 ° 28' east. The neighboring provinces are Jiangsu in the northwest and Zhejiang in the southwest. The province's terrain is flat. The average height above sea level is four meters. The highest mountain is She Shan with a height of 100 meters. It can be reached by cable car.

In 1949 the administrative area of ​​the city had an area of ​​636 km². In 1958 ten counties with an area of ​​5274 km² (Baoshan, Chongming, Chuansha, Fengxian, Jiading, Jinshan, Nanhui, Qingpu, Shanghai, Songjiang, all located in Jiangsu Province) Shanghai were incorporated .

Today the city has an area of ​​6340.5 km². 1928.13 km² (30.4%) of this belong to the core city ( Puxi ) and the inner suburbs ( Minhang , Baoshan , Jiading and Pudong ), 4412.37 km² (69.6%) consist of outer suburbs and areas with a rural settlement structure . The entire administrative area is more than twice as large as the Saarland and has an extension of approximately 120 kilometers in north-south direction and 100 kilometers in east-west direction. Within the city limits are Chongming Island (the third largest island in China: 1,041.21 km²) and other islands such as Changxing and Hengsha.

The administrative area of ​​Shanghai is rich in water resources (122 km² water surface) with numerous rivers, canals and lakes, including the area Jiangnan, as the alluvial plain of the Yangtze Delta is called. Jiangnan, which also includes parts of the east Chinese provinces of Jiangsu and Zhejiang, is characterized by a dense river network and has an area of ​​697 km² in Shanghai, which makes up eleven percent of the total area of ​​Shanghai.

The largest rivers in Shanghai are the Huangpu, Suzhou , Chuanyang, and Dingpu. The 113 kilometer long Huangpu (its origin is the Tai Lake ) divides the city into two halves (Puxi and Pudong); it is between 300 and 700 meters wide, on average 360 ​​meters. The ice-free river is Shanghai's main waterway.

The Suzhou River flows through Shanghai over a length of 54 kilometers and is on average 45 meters wide. Most of the lakes are in the western part of Shanghai, the largest is the Dianshan with an area of ​​62 km². Other urban areas in the administrative region of Shanghai include Anting , Baoshan , Jiading , Jinshan , Qingpu and Songjiang .

The local dialect ( Shanghai , also Shanghai) is one of the variants of the East Chinese Wu dialect .


Shanghai is located in a large delta formed by the Yangtze River at its confluence with the East China Sea. The entire lowland on both sides of the river consists of dark loess-free alluvial soil , which is formed by the sediments of the Yangtze. The delta plain, built up from its silt and criss-crossed by canals and dams, is one of the most fertile areas in China and at the same time its main supplier of cotton.

The Yangtze River estuary is probably the filling of an ancient part of the sea, and the many small island mountains in the area were originally real islands. The delta formation moved the port city of Shanghai, originally founded by the sea, already 30 kilometers inland.

City structure

The direct government city of Shanghai is divided into 16 districts.


The city center ( Puxi ) is divided into seven districts that are west of the Huangpu River : Huangpu ( 黃浦 區  /  黄浦 区 , Huángpǔ Qū ), Xuhui ( 徐匯 區  /  徐汇 区 , Xúhuì Qū ), Changning ( 長寧 區  /  长宁 区 , Chángníng Qū ), Jing'an ( 靜安 區  /  静安 区 , Jìng'ān Qū ), Putuo ( 普陀 區  /  普陀 区 , Pǔtuó Qū ), Hongkou ( 虹口 區  /  虹口 区 , Hóngkǒu Qū ) and Yangpu ( 楊浦 區  /  杨浦 区 , Yángpǔ Qū ). On May 20, 2011, the former Luwan District ( 盧灣 區  /  卢湾 区 , Lúwān Qū ) was dissolved and its area integrated into Huangpu; Zhabei ( 閘北 區  /  闸北 区 , Zháběi Qū ) was added to Jing'an in 2015.


In the vicinity of the center there are four other municipalities that the urban settlement area includes the core city (urban area). Between 1988 and 1992, these were converted from districts into city districts. This includes the Pudong district east of the Huangpu River ( 浦東 新區  /  浦东 新区 , Pǔdōng Xīn Qū ). The latter was a circle until 1992 and was named Chuansha. In 2009, the former Nanhui District ( 南匯 區  /  南汇 区 , Nánhuì Qū ) was dissolved and its area was integrated into Pudong. In 1988 Baoshan ( 寶山 區  /  宝山 区 , Bǎoshān Qū ) was converted into a municipality, in 1992 Jiading ( 嘉定 區  /  嘉定 区 , Jiādìng Qū ) and Minhang ( 閔行區  /  闵行区 , Mǐnháng Qū ).

Further surroundings

Five city districts (these were converted from districts to city districts between 1992 and 2016) are located further away from the city center in the rural areas outside the core city. In 1992, Jinshan ( 金山區  /  金山区 , Jīnshān Qū ) was converted into a district, 1997 Songjiang ( 松江 區  /  松江 区 , Sōngjiāng Qū ), 1999 Qingpu ( 青浦 區  /  青浦 区 , Qīngpǔ Qū ), 2001 Fengxian ( 奉賢 區  /  奉贤 区 , Fèngxián Qū ) and 2016 Chongming ( 崇明 區  /  崇明 区 , Chóngmíng Qū ). The latter consists of the island of the same name Chongming Dao in the mouth of the Yangtze River and two smaller islands south of it.


Shanghai has a subtropical - maritime monsoon climate with four distinct seasons, with spring and autumn being comparatively short.

Shanghai lies on the border between a cool, humid maritime climate and a subtropical, warm monsoon climate. In winter it is damp cold, the temperatures are on average 3.4 to 5.6  ° C . Occasionally there is also severe frost. In the past, these low temperatures were very uncomfortable for the residents south of the Yangtze, because it marked the "heating line", which means that south of the Yangtze was not allowed to be heated. But because it can get very cold there too, this regulation has been abolished.

In the hot, humid summer months, average temperatures of 23.1 to 27.2 ° C and a humidity of up to 100% are reached. The daily maximum temperatures occasionally reach up to 40 ° C. In addition, numerous typhoons hit the city in the summer months , with often very heavy rainfall in a very short time.

The highest temperature was officially measured on August 7, 2013 at 40.8 ° C, the lowest on January 19, 1893 at −12.1 ° C. The annual average temperature is 15.3 ° C. The total annual precipitation is 1112 millimeters, 50% of which fall from mid-May to mid-September (flood season). In this part of the year there are three distinct rainy periods: the "spring rain", the " plum rain" and the "autumn rain". In total, there are an average of 130 rainy days.

Average monthly temperatures and rainfall for Shanghai
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Max. Temperature ( ° C ) 7.7 8.6 12.7 18.6 23.5 27.2 31.6 31.5 27.2 22.3 16.7 10.6 O 19.9
Min. Temperature (° C) 0.5 1.5 5.1 10.6 15.7 20.3 24.8 24.7 20.5 14.7 8.6 2.4 O 12.5
Precipitation ( mm ) 39 59 81 102 115 152 128 133 156 61 51 35 Σ 1,112
Rainy days ( d ) 9 10 13 13 13 14th 12 10 12 9 8th 7th Σ 130
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
  Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec


Origin and further development

Historical map of Shanghai from Meyers Konversations-Lexikon 1888

The first traces of settlement in the region go back to around 4000 BC. BC back. Shanghai was first mentioned as a village in 960. With the economic upturn in the Yangtze River Delta, Shanghai grew too. In 1074 Shanghai got its own tax office. In 1264 it was merged with three other villages. At that time, the city had an important trading port, from which the region's impressive cotton harvest was shipped to the hinterland of Beijing and Japan. In 1554 Shanghai got a city wall ten meters high and five kilometers in circumference. By the Qing dynasty (1644–1911), large merchant guilds, organized by trade and externally similar to the Dutch guilds, had formed, which shared economic and, in some cases, political control over the city.

Foreign concessions

After the First Opium War , Great Britain forced the opening of Shanghai to trade with the European powers under the Treaty of Nanking in 1842 . The British chose Shanghai as the contract port because, as the East India Company representative Hugh Lingsey put it, since the 1840s the city had become "East Asia's most important marketplace". Christian missions were freed up with trade , merchants and missionaries enjoyed freedom of movement and immunity under criminal law .

Location of the French Concession in Shanghai (red) and the International Settlement (yellow)

After the British, the French followed in 1847 (Treaty of / traité de Huangpu). These two powers established the first foreign concessions in Shanghai - the British along the federal government and in the area north of old Shanghai, the Chinese city, the French in the southwest around a cathedral that a French missionary had founded 200 years earlier. In the period that followed, a larger Jewish community also formed in the city .

The Americans came to the city in 1863 and the Japanese in 1895. They incorporated their own areas of the British concession, which had expanded to become the so-called " International Settlement ". In a number of privileged enclaves , leased indefinitely, traders fell under the jurisdiction of their own country or under that of mixed courts. There were also police forces of their own.

Due to its favorable location near the main trade route of the large silk and tea producing regions, Shanghai developed into an important port and industrial center by 1900, which was largely controlled by the Green Gang , a notorious syndicate founded in the 18th century by unemployed seafarers . By the beginning of the 1920s, the triad had also brought the widespread underworld under its rule. Cruel examples were made of merchants and criminals who disregarded the strict code of conduct: all protruding tendons were cut with a knife and left at the roadside.

During the Taiping Uprising (1851–1864), many fled the massacres to foreign settlements and increased the cheap labor force in Shanghai. Farmers were also attracted by the city's visible wealth. The first urban proletariat in China emerged, and the miserable living conditions, combined with increasingly rampant unemployment and the exploitation of Chinese workers by foreign investors, created the natural breeding ground for revolutionary forces. The population and the economic importance of Shanghai grew considerably. Later, during the Boxer Rebellion (1900) and the overthrow of the last Chinese emperor Puyi (1911), many people fled to the international concessions.

Shanghai as a cosmopolitan city

Nanjing Road in the 1930s
Shanghai, 1933
Battle of Shanghai, 1937

From the end of the 19th century to the 1920s, Shanghai developed into a cosmopolitan city. At the beginning of the 20th century, Shanghai's population reached the million mark. From 1918 the city was the place of activity of the founding father of the National People's Party of China (Kuomintang) and statesman Sun Yat-sen . In 1926 the British writer Aldous Huxley never had such an impression of a dense morass of lush interwoven life in any city as here. Shanghai has become synonymous with sin, adventurism and wealth.

The Chinese developed an increasing interest in politics and regained their national consciousness. With the Treaty of Versailles after the First World War, all German possessions in the country fell to Japan instead of being returned to China. This led to the “ May Fourth Movement ” in 1919 . The Communist Party of China was founded in Shanghai in 1921, although it had no more than 300 members in all of China by 1923 and therefore formed a first united front to deliberately infiltrate the Kuomintang.

After a massacre in which the British colonial police shot several students, the May 30th Movement developed from Shanghai . This nationwide protest movement was organized by the Kuomintang and led to the proclamation of Chinese reunification in 1928 . During the Manchurian Crisis in 1931, a nationwide boycott of Japanese goods began in Shanghai. On January 28, 1932, the Japanese army attacked the city with about 70,000 soldiers in an attempt to break the boycott. The attack was triggered by an incident in which five Japanese monks were mistreated in Shanghai, and one monk later died from his injuries. During the Battle of Shanghai , the Kuomintang National Revolutionary Army withstood the attack near the coast, but then had to retreat into the city in the weeks that followed. The trade boycott had to end and a demilitarized zone had to be set up around Shanghai. The conflict ended on May 31, 1933 with the signing of the Tanggu Armistice Agreement.

During the Second Battle of Shanghai , after a house-to-house battle on November 9, 1937, Japanese forces took the city except for the extraterritorial areas. Within these colonial territories, the French Jesuit priest Jacquinot de Besange had set up the Shanghai International Security Zone to protect the civilian population , in which hundreds of thousands of Chinese refugees sought refuge.

Shanghai as a place of refuge for European Jews

Shanghai is also a place of German and Austrian history. After Austria was annexed to National Socialist Germany and the November pogroms , around 18,000 Jews from Germany and Austria fled to Shanghai between 1938 and 1941 . Because no visa was required here , it was the last place of refuge from persecution by the National Socialists. The history of the Jews in Japan is dominated by this saving the Jews from the Holocaust . One of the 6,000 Austrians who fled to the city was the doctor Jakob Rosenfeld , who later rose to become Minister of Health in his new home in China. A well-known German refugee is the later Treasury Secretary of the USA W. Michael Blumenthal . Also Fritz Levy , known from the documentary Fritz Lives! , was one of the German Jews who found refuge from National Socialist persecution in Shanghai.

Shortly after their attack on Pearl Harbor in December 1941, as a result of which the United States entered the Pacific War , the Japanese occupying forces interned Allied nationals residing in Shanghai. The French troops were not disarmed as they were nominally allies as troops of the Vichy regime . Towards the end of the war, the French troops were arrested in Shanghai on March 10, 1945 , a day later than their comrades in Indochina .

In May 1943, the Japanese forced all Jewish refugees who had arrived since 1938, also known as Shanghai residents, to move to a designated area of ​​the Hongkou district and restricted their freedom of movement outside the Shanghai ghetto .

The Jewish Refugee Museum in Shanghai is dedicated to remembering this part of Shanghai's history . She is recognized literarily in Ursula Krechel's novel Shanghai far from where .

Communist takeover

Exhibition Center

After the end of the Second World War , the city fell back to China, as the USA, Great Britain and France waived their claims against the national-Chinese government during the war.

When the communists marched into Shanghai on May 27, 1949, led by Mao Zedong , they took control of the most important economic and trading center in Asia and thus of a profitable international port. While the foreign community expected to go about its business as usual, the new government was determined to assign Shanghai a role in the radical transformation of China. Many foreign companies moved their facilities to Hong Kong after the Communist seizure of power . The worst slums have been torn down and replaced with apartment blocks. Foreign capital was confiscated or heavily taxed.

During their escape, the Kuomintang managed to secure the gold reserves of the Bank of China for themselves and to transport them to Taiwan . Shanghai remained a stronghold of radical thought. From there the Cultural Revolution of Mao Zedong, who had been eliminated by the central government in Beijing, took its course in 1966. Some Red Guards proclaimed their own Shanghai commune before the events took on unrestrained destruction and revenge campaigns. The city became the site of fighting between various factions. After Mao's death in 1976, Shanghai was the last bastion of the so-called Gang of Four in the battle for his successor.

From the 1980s, a rapid economic upswing set in again in Shanghai, which was mainly promoted by the former mayor of the city and later President Jiang Zemin . Also supported Zhu Rongji , also a former mayor of Shanghai, and between 1998 and 2003 Prime Minister of the People's Republic of China, the prosperity of the city.

Economic boom

Pudong 2005
Pudong 2012
Shanghai in the smog. View of Pudong

In the mid-1980s, the decision was made to once again assign Shanghai the pioneering role in the modernization of China. This led to a huge increase in industrial production and foreign investment. In 1990 the Pudong Special Economic Zone was founded and the foundation stone for a "New Covenant" was laid.

The city distinguishes itself as a location for the development of bio , information and microelectronic technology. It is the seat of numerous international financial institutions. The tallest building in China is in Shanghai, the 632-meter-high Shanghai Tower . The city is the only place that a magnetic levitation train - the Transrapid Shanghai to the airport - uses in public transport.

However, some issues remain unsolved, most notably hopeless overpopulation and severe environmental problems such as smog , noise and river pollution. In 1996 Shanghai was declared one of the world's most polluted cities. Shanghai ranked fourth on the world's most polluted cities. But many social problems returned that had been thought the Communists would have eliminated forever after 1949. Unemployment, drug abuse and prostitution are all growing rapidly.

Population development

Housing estate in Shanghai
Jin Mao Building

The economic success of Shanghai has a great attraction for millions of Chinese. In order to be able to control the influx of people into the city, the influx is channeled through a strictly managed reporting and registration system for residents with permanent residence up to the present day. The population remained remarkably constant despite the fact that Shanghai was the economically dominant city in China, having increased rapidly in the 1950s through the 1980s. Since the beginning of the 1990s, there has been a slow increase again.

In 1957, around 6.9 million people lived in the city ​​center (high density of buildings and a closed place), in 1990 it was around 7.8 million. In 2008 the population of the inner city ( Puxi ) and the inner suburbs ( Minhang , Baoshan , Jiading , Pudong ) was 13.9 million. The population density here is 7226 inhabitants / km² (Puxi = 22,562 inhabitants / km²). By comparison, there are 3800 in Berlin . In 2010 there were 15.9 million with permanent residence, plus 7.1 million temporary residents.

Approximately 23 million people (2010) live in the entire administrative area of ​​Shanghai, including the population in the rural areas outside the core city. Of these, 15.9 million are registered residents with permanent residence ( 戶口  /  户口 , hùkǒu ) and 7.1 million temporary residents ( 流動 人口  /  流动 人口 , liúdòng rénkǒu ) with a temporary residence permit ( 暫住 證  /  暂住 证 , zànzhùzhèng ). The population density here is 2978 inhabitants / km².

If you want to stay in the city for more than three days, you have to report to an authority and be registered there. The applicant then receives a temporary residence permit for three months, which must be extended after the deadline. A certificate from the home town must be presented to the office confirming that the person is registered there.

The official population growth in Shanghai is currently controlled exclusively by immigration, because the natural increase in registered permanent residents has been characterized by a decline in the birth rate for several years, which is so far unique in all cities in China. While the annual natural growth of residents with permanent residence in 1957 was around 4.0%, this rate quickly fell below 1.0% and finally to a negative value of -0.19% in 2000. Natural growth was 2006 –0.12%, birth rate : 5.95 ‰ (see: Germany 8.2 ‰), death rate: 7.19 ‰. The average life expectancy in Shanghai is 82.41 years, 80.18 years for men and 84.67 years for women.

In April 2004, the one-child policy was relaxed: in Shanghai, divorced and remarried partners have since been allowed to have children, even if they already have a child from a previous marriage. While the birth rate was 4.28 ‰ in 2003, it rose to around 6 ‰ as a result of the easing and has remained at this value since 2004. As a result, the natural decline in the population slowed from 3.24 ‰ in 2003 to 1.24 ‰ in 2006 (Germany –1.8 ‰). The natural shrinkage is reduced by immigration. Young people immigrate to Shanghai, reducing the average age. As a result, there are proportionally fewer old people in the population and therefore relatively few deaths. The fertility rate , depending on the estimate at about 0.9 children per woman (Germany: 1.37). The 2010 census recorded a population of 23 million people in the entire administrative area of ​​Shanghai.

The following overview shows the population of the core city (Puxi) and the inner suburbs (Minhang, Baoshan, Jiading, Pudong). All residents registered in Shanghai are listed. This includes people with permanent residence and temporary residents with temporary residence permits.

Population 1851-2005 (excluding temporary residents)
year Residents
1800 200,000
1851 250,000
1864 500,000
1879 276,000
1890 375,000
1901 651,000
1910 832,500
1918 1,000,000
1926 1,500,000
1931 3,124,000
1940 3,595,000
1948 4,423,000
1950 4,927,300
year Residents
1953 6,204,417
1958 6,977,000
1970 7,000,000
1978 5,570,000
1980 6,010,000
1982 6,320,829
1985 6,980,000
1987 7,220,000
1990 7,821,787
1995 9,566,600
2000 12,531,139
2005 13.291.900
2008 13,831,900

Population development of the agglomeration according to the UN

The Shanghai agglomeration grew from 4.3 million inhabitants in 1950 to 24.8 million inhabitants in 2017. This makes Shanghai one of the 5 largest agglomerations in the world. A population of 34.3 million is expected for 2035.

year population
1950 4,288,000
1960 6,865,000
1970 6,052,000
1980 5,928,000
1990 8,606,000
2000 14,247,000
2010 20,314,000
2017 24,826,000

Development of the living situation

Residential buildings

Decades of neglect of the infrastructure and housing construction, but also the rapid development in recent years, made many bottlenecks for the further development of the city obvious.

The supply of living space is still precarious, even if, according to official information from the city government, the net living space per capita has tripled between 1957 (3  ) and today (9 m²). The communist city government was by no means inactive. Since the beginning of the 1950s, the living conditions in around 300 urban districts with inadequate standards have been improved and many new residential areas have been built. For comparison: in the apartments and homes propagated for medium-sized businesses and foreign workers, such as the planned town of Anting built in the German style , a requirement of 30 m² per person is expected. Anting is one of the nine planned cities of the initiative One City, Nine Towns ( One City, Nine Towns ), built from 2001 onwards based on Western models . High housing costs outside the center resulted in vacancies in the planned cities after construction.

Despite this, the construction of apartments did not adequately meet the growing demand for decades due to a lack of capital. In the past, Shanghai was traditionally considered to be one of the cities with great housing shortages in China. Housing construction has only picked up since the start of the economic reforms: since the early 1980s, the total living space in Shanghai has more than doubled. The improvement in the supply of living space was combined with a limited housing reform which sought to increase investment funds, among other things, by promoting home ownership and establishing public accumulation funds.

The proportion of households in acute housing shortage, i.e. with less than four square meters of living space per capita, has fallen to just under ten percent of all households today. In Shanghai it is above all the old town quarters, which are also interspersed with numerous industrial companies, in which the living conditions are still very cramped. Since the building land in the older residential areas in the city center is very expensive, the city government has sold some of the land to foreign investors who built office, business and hotel complexes.

As a result of this practice, in connection with numerous traffic projects, large-scale renovations in the old town and the forced relocation of several hundred thousand people in new housing estates on the outskirts with inadequate infrastructure. The housing data mentioned only refer to residents with their main residence in Shanghai; the housing situation of the around 4.7 million residents with limited residence permits is significantly worse. Numerous migrants , mostly former farmers from the rural regions of China, live on construction sites, in simple company dormitories or rent a room from farmers on the outskirts of the city. A large proportion of the temporary residents live on the outskirts because there is more space for self-built huts and the police controls are less strict. Slum- like settlements have also been found in Shanghai since the 1990s.

The importance of migrants for the economy and life in Shanghai is assessed differently. On the one hand, the immigrants are almost indispensable as construction workers, craftsmen, small traders or workers in street cleaning and in the textile factories; on the other hand, their pressure on the housing market, the infrastructure and their share of criminal offenses in the city are viewed with concern.

In a ranking of cities according to their quality of life, Shanghai was ranked 103rd out of 231 cities worldwide in 2018. It took first place out of all the cities examined on the Chinese mainland.


City government

Chen Yi, first communist mayor of Shanghai

Mayor of Shanghai is Yang Xiong (* 1953). He took over the post from his predecessor Han Zheng on December 26, 2012. Han Zheng has since November 2012 Member of the politburo and as successor of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau ascended Yu Zhengsheng . Han was the secretary of the city's Party Committee until October 2017. Li Qiang has been the party committee secretary since October 2017 .

The city government is subordinate to the governments of 18 city ​​districts and one district. The city districts are in turn divided into street quarters , sometimes also into large municipalities . The district, however, is made up of municipalities and large municipalities . At the lower end of Shanghai's administrative pyramid are the so-called communities of residents ( 社區  /  社区 ) in the urban areas , which are administered by the residents' committees ( 居民委員會  /  居民委员会 , jūmín wěiyuánhùi ) and in the rural regions the villages ( ), which are managed by Village committees ( 村民 委員會  /  村民 委员会 , cūnmín wěiyuánhùi ) are administered.

Compared to Beijing, Shanghai has been characterized by particularly liberal politics for many years. After the Communists came to power in 1949, the city had long been neglected by the political leadership in Beijing, but then in the 1980s and 1990s many Shanghai politicians rose to the highest party and government positions.

Town twinning

Shanghai has partnerships with the following cities:

JapanJapansince November 30, 1973: Yokohama , Japan
JapanJapansince April 18, 1974: Osaka , Japan
United StatesUnited Statessince January 28, 1979: San Francisco , USA
ItalyItalysince June 25, 1979: Milan , Italy
NetherlandsNetherlandssince November 23, 1979: Rotterdam , Netherlands
CroatiaCroatiasince June 18, 1980: Zagreb , Croatia
Korea NorthNorth Koreasince June 18, 1982: Hamhŭng , North Korea
PakistanPakistansince February 15, 1984: Karachi , Pakistan
BelgiumBelgiumsince May 27, 1984: Antwerp , Belgium
CanadaCanadasince May 14, 1985: Montreal , Canada
GreeceGreecesince June 24, 1985: Piraeus , Greece
GermanyGermanysince May 29, 1986: Hamburg , Germany
MoroccoMoroccosince September 8, 1986: Casablanca , Morocco
FranceFrancesince October 26, 1987: Marseille , France
BrazilBrazilsince July 7, 1988: São Paulo , Brazil
RussiaRussiasince December 15, 1988: Saint Petersburg , Russia
TurkeyTurkeysince October 23, 1989: Istanbul , Turkey
EgyptEgyptsince May 15, 1992: Alexandria , Egypt
IsraelIsraelsince June 21, 1993: Haifa , Israel
Korea SouthSouth Koreasince August 24, 1993: Busan , South Korea
VietnamVietnamsince May 14, 1994: Ho Chi Minh City , Vietnam
VanuatuVanuatusince June 8, 1994: Port Vila , Vanuatu
New ZealandNew Zealandsince October 21, 1994: Dunedin , New Zealand
UzbekistanUzbekistansince December 15, 1994: Tashkent , Uzbekistan
PortugalPortugalsince April 15, 1995: Porto , Portugal
YemenYemensince September 14, 1995: Aden , Yemen
NamibiaNamibiasince November 1, 1995: Windhoek , Namibia
ArgentinaArgentinasince June 17, 1997: Rosario , Argentina
FinlandFinlandsince September 14, 1998: Espoo , Finland
United KingdomUnited Kingdomsince October 18, 1999: Liverpool , Great Britain
MozambiqueMozambiquesince October 25, 1999: Maputo , Mozambique
United Arab EmiratesUnited Arab Emiratessince May 30, 2000: Dubai , United Arab Emirates
EcuadorEcuadorsince July 6, 2001: Guayaquil , Ecuador
ChileChilesince July 10, 2001: Valparaíso , Chile
SpainSpainsince October 31, 2001: Barcelona , Spain
NorwayNorwaysince November 10, 2001: Oslo , Norway
Sri LankaSri Lankasince August 11, 2003: Colombo , Sri Lanka
SwedenSwedensince October 23, 2003: Gothenburg , Sweden
IrelandIrelandsince May 19, 2005: Cork , Ireland
AustriaAustriasince May 17, 2006: Salzburg , Austria
United StatesUnited Statessince December 18, 2006: Winston-Salem , USA
SwitzerlandSwitzerlandsince November 19, 2007: Basel , Switzerland

Regional partnerships

Shanghai has partnerships with the following regions:

JapanJapansince November 21, 1980: Osaka Prefecture , Japan
PhilippinesPhilippinessince June 15, 1983: Metro Manila , Philippines
PolandPolandsince July 4, 1985: Pomeranian Voivodeship , Poland
AustraliaAustraliasince May 24, 1989: State of Queensland , Australia
ChileChilesince August 28, 1996: Santiago Province , Chile
MexicoMexicosince November 18, 1998: State of Jalisco , Mexico
ThailandThailandsince April 2, 2000: Chiang Mai Province , Thailand
South AfricaSouth Africasince May 16, 2001: KwaZulu-Natal Province , South Africa
RomaniaRomaniasince April 15, 2002: Constanța County , Romania
SlovakiaSlovakiasince November 10, 2003: Bratislavský kraj , Slovakia
DenmarkDenmarksince November 10, 2003: Midtjylland Region , Denmark
IndonesiaIndonesiasince August 30, 2006: Jawa Timur Province , Indonesia


German Evangelical Church Shanghai, built in 1932

There are several Buddhist temples in Shanghai , such as the Jade Buddha Temple (Yufo Si). It is one of the most important religious sites in Shanghai, is located a little south of the Suzhou Canal in the northwest of the city and was built in 1882 especially for two precious Buddha statues from Myanmar . The statues (the seated Buddha 190 cm high, the reclining Buddha 96 cm long) were each carved from a single block of white jade. The temple was closed between 1949 and 1980 and is now being used again. Today about 100 monks live in the temple and train students to fill the reopening monasteries with new life. Other large Buddhist temples are the Jing'an Temple and the Longhua Temple with a pagoda that is over a thousand years old. There are also Taoist and Confucian temples.

The Catholic Church uses the Xujiahui Cathedral as the episcopal church of the Shanghai Diocese . Other Christian communities are also represented in the city. Shanghai's largest Islamic place of worship is the Xiaotaoyuan Mosque . The Shanghai ghetto no longer exists and the Chinese Jews are an extremely small minority.

Culture and sights

List of sights in Shanghai


Opera house
Shanghai Oriental Art Center

The city fathers of Shanghai were at the People's Square ( 人民廣場  /  人民广场 , guǎngchǎng Rénmín  - "People's Square") leading to colonial times was a race track, an extravagant opera house, the Shanghai Grand Theater building, an impressive building with a height of 40 meters. Construction started in 1994 and the inauguration took place in 1998. The theater has three halls: the main hall has space for 1800 people, a medium-sized hall has 600 seats, and a chamber music hall 250 seats. The architects ARTE Charpentier provided the design . The large central hall is suitable for the performance of western plays, operas and orchestral concerts, but also Chinese operas.

The Shanghai Center in Nanjing Xi Lu houses a huge, new multi-branch building for concerts, ballet, opera and acrobatic shows of international standing. The nightly performance of the Shanghai acrobat troupe is a spectacle of floor acrobatics, juggling, clown performances, magic demonstrations and animal numbers. Some of the tricks such as swallowing the sword, spitting fire and the impressive balancing acts were developed as early as the times of the Han dynasty (206 BC to 220 AD).

The Lan Xin Theater in Changle Lu dates back to the imperial era and shows both Western and Chinese operas; sometimes there are also magician shows. As an outpost of colonial culture and the seat of the British Amateur Dramatic Society , the theater was a venue for popular revues until 1933.

The Shanghai Oriental Art Center , located in the cultural center of Pudong, is one of the leading performing arts and cultural attractions in Shanghai and China. The architect was the French Paul Andreu .


Shanghai Museum

Of the many museums in the city, the Shanghai Museum with its extensive collections of Chinese art (ceramics, porcelain and paintings) deserves special mention. It is one of the city's cultural centers. The museum has ten galleries that offer a complete overview of Chinese art and culture. The main attractions include a live demonstration of ancient pottery techniques shown seven times a day, a collection of brightly painted Nuo ritual masks from Guizhou Province , and a salmon skin suit, as worn by the Hezhen people in Heilongjiang Province . An enlightening exhibition on the history of Chinese painting shows pictures from the Warring States Period through the Song Period to the Western influences under the Qing.

In October 2013 the AURORA Museum opened in Pudong with a focus on Chinese culture and history.

There is also the Natural Science Museum with its numerous zoological exhibits.

To the southwest of Shanghai is Longhua Cemetery of the Martyrs , the name of which is intended to commemorate those who lost their lives fighting for Chinese communism during the decades before the final victory in 1949. In particular, it commemorates the workers, activists and students who were massacred by Chiang Kai-shek's forces in the 1920s ; the cemetery grounds are said to have been the central execution site.

In the middle of the area is a glass-enclosed pyramid-shaped exhibition hall with a large memorial for 250 communist martyrs who opposed Chiang's soldiers. Countless stone memorial sculptures, many of them with photos and names, are scattered across the park, one of them with an eternal flame directly behind the exhibition hall. The fresh flowers that are laid daily bear witness to the importance these events have to this day.

In the north of Shanghai, in the Jiading district , in the large municipality of Anting, the Shanghai Automobile Museum, opened in 2007, is China's first automobile museum.

Power Station of Art is a museum for contemporary art. It opened in 2012 with a contemporary art exhibition by the Center Pompidou Gallery in Paris, entitled Portrait of the Times. The museum is housed in a former thermal power station.

M50 Arts District (Chinese: 莫干山 路 50 号) is an artists' district for contemporary art. The name M50 refers to the actual Shanghai address and is often abbreviated to M50 or Moganshan Road. It is located in an old industrial area on Suzhou Creek.


Jing'an Temple

A city in ancient China that was the seat of an imperial official always had a Confucius temple, including Shanghai's recently renovated temple from 1855. Annually on the terrace in front of the main hall, ceremonies for Confucius's birthday took place. The hall houses a statue of the great master and his two favorite students. Stone slabs in the walls record, among other things, the text of his conversations (Lunyu). Various exhibitions on classical art and culture can be seen in the side halls.

The Jing'an Temple is a Buddhist temple on the Nanjing Road in Jing'an District . The temple was built in AD 247 by the Wu Dynasty during the Three Kingdoms Period . The temple was originally located on Suzhou , but was moved to its current location in 1216 AD during the Song Dynasty . During the Cultural Revolution it was converted into a plastics factory, then dismantled again into a temple and reconstructed in 1983. In 2004, in a second phase of extensive renovation work, the temple was elaborately decorated with wood carvings and lavishly gilded.


Long Hua Pagoda
The Yu Garden , one of the most famous gardens in China

Today, Shanghai is the most modern city in the People's Republic of China, most similar to the West. The historical core has largely given way to new buildings and is only available as a tourist attraction, while the number of skyscrapers is increasing due to incessant construction activity.

The seven-story “Long Hua Pagoda” from the Song Dynasty (960–1279) and the Long Hua Monastery with a three meter high Buddha statue are among the few historical attractions in Shanghai .

The waterbund , or Bund for short , was renamed Zhong-Shan Street after the first Chinese President Sun Yat-sen . The Bund was initially built by the Dutch as a dike to the Huangpu River, a tributary of the Yangtze River. There is a promenade and European-style buildings. They were created around 1900. The former central building of the Chinese Sea Customs with its 33 meter high tower is one of the most famous, and for a long time the tallest building in China. The Peace Hotel and the Waibaidu Bridge, which opened in 1908, are also famous . Shanghai owned the tallest houses outside the United States before World War II.

To the south of this street stretches the old town, which is characterized by mostly two-story wooden houses and narrow streets. In the heart of this historic center of Shanghai is a bazaar and Yu Garden (Yu Yuan) from the 16th and 17th centuries, one of the most famous gardens in China. The facility includes around 30 halls and pavilions as well as several lakes. The city's astronomical observatory is also worth seeing. The old Li Longs in the former French and English districts, where three generations lived in one apartment, were demolished. They were often built from a combination of wood / brick / plaster or concrete / steel.

Most of the skyscrapers are built in Pudong. There is also the Shanghai World Financial Center , which reached its final height of 492 meters with 101 floors on September 14, 2007. This makes the building higher than the adjacent Jin Mao Tower (421 meters) and the Oriental Pearl Tower (468 meters). Until the topping-out ceremony for the Shanghai Tower in August 2014, the Shanghai World Financial Center was the tallest building in the People's Republic of China and (after the Burj Khalifa and Taipei 101 ) the third tallest building in the world. The Shanghai Tower (completion in April 2015) in the Lujiazui financial district exceeds it by 140 meters and, at 632 meters, has even been the second tallest building in the world since August 2013.

Membrane construction of the expo axis at night

In addition to the country pavilions, the Expo axis with the world's largest membrane construction, which will later be used as a shopping center, was built on the site of the Expo 2010 .

A 90,000 square meter bunker was completed in Shanghai in 2006. The underground area offers space for 200,000 people and is intended to protect against possible Taiwanese attacks with rockets, nuclear weapons or poison gas. It is in response to the Taiwanese government's announcement that it would fire cruise missiles at Shanghai in return for a Chinese attack on Taipei or Kaohsiung . According to the newspaper "Shanghai Morning Post", the bunker is fully air-conditioned and equipped with water and electricity supplies. The area is connected to the Shanghai Metro and several public buildings by 15 corridors . The supply of the people could be ensured there for up to two weeks.


Yu Garden in Huangpu
People's Park in Huangpu
Century Park in Pudong
Chenshan Botanical Garden in Songjiang

Unlike Beijing and many other historical cities in China with former palace parks or people's parks that were set up early on, Shanghai lacks large public green spaces. On the one hand, this is due to the fact that the local rulers did not show the same will to represent as z. B. the emperor in the Chinese capital, on the other hand to the high land prices in the city center. The Yu Garden from 1559 is an exception, but according to today's urban planning understanding it is not a park.

The West of the Huangpu River core area located Huangpu is densely built up for centuries. Only with the displacement of the existing industrial and residential areas by modern administrative, office and residential buildings, which began in the 1980s, did the opportunity arise to create a bit of green in recessed parcels or around the towering objects. North of the central transport hub, the People's Square ( english People's Square ), is the People's Park ( english People's Park ). Together they form by far the largest undeveloped area in the core zone west of the Huangpu River.

In the Pudong district east of the river, on the other hand, a water-rich park was created with the approximately 140-hectare Century Park , and the Shanghai Disney Resort was also opened in Pudong in June 2016 .

Right at the confluence of the Huangpu and the Suzhou Canal is a creation from British colonial times, Huangpu Park , whose underground was created from alluvial mud and silt that piled up around a shipwreck. During the British rule, Sikh soldiers were to be found there, who checked compliance with the rule, according to which dogs and Chinese were forbidden to enter the park - unless they were servants accompanied by their rule.

After protests, this practice was changed so that “well-dressed” Chinese were allowed to enter the park, provided that their application for a special permit was granted. There is now a monument to the “folk heroes” in the park, which the locals like to visit for early morning taijiquan . A small museum is located under the monument, which presents an informative outline of the city's history.

The Botanical Garden is an oasis rich in trees and populated by birds, away from the noise of the big city. Among the more than 9,000 plants that thrive there are two pomegranate trees that are said to have been planted in the 18th century during the reign of Emperor Qianlong and, despite their age, still bear fruit today. The orchid collection, which includes more than a hundred different species, is also interesting. In the spring of 1999, the world exhibition for plants took place on the site. For Expo 2010 was in the district of Songjiang another Botanical Garden opened, the Botanical Garden Chenshan .


Since 2008 a memorial commemorates Albert Einstein and his life's work. Einstein had combined his trip to Japan in 1922 with a trip to Shanghai and lived here at the Astor House Hotel . When he arrived on November 13th of that year, he found out about his Nobel Prize . On December 31, 1923, Einstein came to Shanghai a second time and gave a lecture on his contribution to physics at City Hall, Fuzhou Road.

There is a memorial to Johann Sebastian Bach near the main train station .

Monuments of the People's Republic of China (Shanghai)

Regular events

Formula 1 racetrack in Anting

Numerous events and festivities are held in Shanghai throughout the year. Most of the Chinese holidays and festivals are based on the movable lunar calendar . That is why the dates in the western calendar differ by up to several weeks each year.

The temple festival held in Longhua Old Town every spring has a tradition that goes back over three centuries. Legend has it that the Laughing Buddha was born under a longhua tree. There he preached the teachings of Buddhism and healed people. This later became the temple festival. Other festivals and events in spring are the peach festival ( 蟠桃 (勝) 會  /  蟠桃 (胜) 会 , pán táo (shèng) huì ) on the 3rd day of the 3rd lunar month ( Xiwangmu's birthday ) in Nan Hui, the Shanghai International Fashion Festival, the Shanghai International Music Festival and the Shanghai International Tea Culture Festival , which is dedicated to the culture of tea drinking.

The Dragon Boat Festival in June - on the fifth day of the fifth month according to the lunar calendar - commemorates the Chinese national hero Qu Yuan, who drowned himself in the river in the 3rd century AD in protest against a corrupt ruling house. According to a legend, people tried to keep the fish from eating his body by throwing rice dumplings wrapped in bamboo leaves into the water and trying to chase the fish away with loud drumming. During races at the Dragon Boat Festival, the teams chase across the water in their narrow boats, cheered on by the beat of the drums. On the holiday, rice wrapped in bamboo leaves is eaten.

Two other events in June are the Shanghai International Film Festival and the Shanghai International TV Festival . The Chinese Grand Prix in Formula 1 racing (The Sinopec Formula One Car Race) will take place in April at the Shanghai International Circuit in Anting , 30 kilometers northwest of Shanghai. Every year on October 1st, the people of Shanghai commemorate the founding of the People's Republic of China with the national holiday. Usually at the beginning of October - on the 15th day of the eighth moon - the moon festival is held (also called autumn festival). According to old tradition, the city's residents watch the full moon that evening and treat themselves to “moon cake”, a pastry filled with egg yolk, bean paste, sugar and other ingredients.

The autumn also hosts the Shanghai Sweet-Osmanthus Festival, the Shanghai International Fireworks Festival, the Shanghai Oranges Festival, the Shanghai International Tourist Festival and the Shanghai International Art Festival . The Shanghai Marathon is held every November . Also in November, the Tennis Masters Cup was held for the third time in the Qi-Zhong Stadium in Shanghai. 2006 Roger Federer was able to perpetuate himself as the winner.

Culinary specialties

The city's restaurant scene is going through numerous changes. In the last few years new and sophisticated restaurants have been opened. A large selection of restaurants offer not only Chinese, but also Japanese , Korean , French or other cuisine.

A resurgence of 1930s Shanghai chic gave rise to many modern eateries serving local dishes. There are also numerous Cantonese restaurants that can compete with those in Hong Kong . Shanghai cuisine offers plenty of fresh fish, shellfish and crustaceans. Characteristic is a cooking technique that is practiced all over China today: red cooking. A stock is prepared from a dark soy sauce and rice wine in which the food (fish, meat or poultry) simmer for several hours. Rice is a classic accompaniment to all meals. Specialties from Shanghai are z. B. "Shanghai Crab" (steamed or deep-fried crayfish), eel in oil, " Millennial eggs " (black eggs, pine blossom eggs), beef "Quilin Ganshao Niu", cleverly seasoned and served, the "eight jewels" chili paste, Crabs with sea ​​cucumbers and the roasted mandarin fish, furthermore “Xiaolongbao”, Shanghai ravioli, filled with pork and grilled, as well as carp tail “Qingyu Shuaishui”, Caotou vegetables “Shengbian Caotou”, pine nuts with corn on the cob “Songren Yumi”, rice dumplings with sweet filling “Gedan Yuanzi”, rice flour biscuits “Canglangting Sijigao”, boat cake “Lübolang Chuandian” and rice dumplings wrapped in bamboo or reed leaves “Qiaojiapeng Zongzi”.


Nanjing Lu

From the Bund , the city's main shopping streets lead west through the center of Shanghai, including one of the two major shopping streets, Nanjing Lu , accompanied by two important traffic arteries running parallel to it, Fuzhou Street and Yan'an Street. In the days of foreign concessions , Nanjing Street was considered a mixture of Broadway and Oxford Streets, and even after 1949 it maintained itself as a hub of theater and cinema and remained a busy shopping street.

Shop windows with luxury items and goods from abroad dominate as ever in the eastern section of Nanjing Dong Street. Like no other street on mainland China , it resembles the center of Hong Kong with its many restaurants, boutiques, cinemas, hotels and, above all, huge department stores . Before 1949 there were numerous teahouses there and also on Fuzhou Street, which also functioned as the city's most exclusive brothels. Geisha- like shuyu (singing and storytelling girls) went from tea house to tea house to stage scenes from classical plays and operas and to entertain guests.

To the northeast of the People's Park, on the circular flyover at the intersection of Nanjing and Xizang Streets, is "Department Store No. 1", the former Sun Department Store . This second largest consumer temple in the country is visited by 100,000 Chinese every day, many of whom come from the country and to Shanghai for the first time. Other famous department stores are the “New World” (Xinshijie) department store and the “Super Brand Mall”, the largest shopping building in Asia. It is centrally located in Pudong near the Jin Mao building and the "Oriental TV Tower".

The second major shopping street is Huaihai Lu, where international labels have moved in. The target groups of Huaihai Lu are the younger, modern locals who love fashion stores like Zara, H&M, or the nouveau riche.

While international brands in particular have settled in Nanjing Lu and Huhai Lu, more and more smaller boutiques of local, Chinese or Asian designers are opening their doors in the former French concession, which are frequented mainly by fashion-conscious locals.

Film centers

The Mingxing and Lianhua studios

Shanghai Peace Hotel

The first moving images in China were presented in 1896 as part of a "tea house variety show" in Shanghai and the country's first cinema opened there in 1908. In the 1930s, cinema was already playing an important role in Shanghai's cultural life. However, due to the large number of foreign residents, mostly western films were shown, more than 80% were from Hollywood .

Among the few important studios that existed in Shanghai in the 1920s and 1930s, the best known was probably "Mingxing", whose films, in contrast to the Hollywood productions , showed a left-wing and anti-imperialist tendency. The film Sister Flower (1933) tells the story of twin sisters who were separated after their birth - one of the sisters lives in Shanghai, the other lives in poor conditions in a village. As the sisters meet again, the film shows the differences in the lives of townspeople and farmers.

The film from the studio "Lianhua" The Goddess (Shen nü - The Divine, 1934) by Wu Yonggang tells of a prostitute working in Shanghai who , within the framework of all the prejudices of the time, fights for the education of her son. The glamorous prostitute was embodied by Ruan Lingyu, who was often referred to as "China's Greta Garbo".

More films about Shanghai

After the Japanese occupation of Shanghai and other parts of China in 1937, “ subversive ” studios like Mingxing and Lianhua had to close immediately, and some talented filmmakers were able to flee inland and continue their work. The war experiences brought the film producers closer to their future audience, the Chinese masses. The result was China's great war epic Spring River Flows East (Yi jiang Chunshui Xiang Dong Liu, 1947), directed by Cai Chusheng and Zheng Junli. The story spans the entire duration of the Anti-Japanese War and the early years of the civil war that followed, set against the backdrop of the everyday life of a family drawn into the conflict. The heroine, who lives in sheer poverty, contrasts with her husband, who left her to lead a decadent life in Shanghai.

The Chinese, suffering from an entire decade of war, viewed this film as an authentic and representative representation of this phase of the war. More than 750,000 people flocked to the premieres - an enormous number considering the fact that the country was still at war.

After the communist seizure of power, the private Shanghai studios had to close, although they were still able to produce some films in the first years after 1949. Most of China's ambitious filmmakers fled to Hong Kong , and large sums of money flowed with them. The film city of Shanghai was subjected to increasingly rigid state control and quickly lost its international importance.

Numerous films have been made about Shanghai since the 1980s. The most important include: Das Reich der Sonne (Empire of the Sun, 1987) by Steven Spielberg , Shanghai Serenade ( 搖啊搖 , 搖 到 外婆 橋  /  摇啊摇 , 摇 到 外婆 桥 , Yáo a Yáo, Yáo dào Wàipóqiáo , 1995) by Zhang Yimou , Eighteen Springs ( 半生緣  /  半生缘 , Bànshēngyuán , 1998) by Ann Hui , Flowers of Shanghai ( 海上花 , hāi shàng huā , 1998) by Hou Hsiao-Hsien , Suzhou River ( 蘇州 河  /  苏州 河 , Sūzhōu Hé , 2000) by Lou Ye , Code 46 (2003) by Michael Winterbottom , Purple Butterfly (Zǐ Húdié, 2003) by Lou Ye, Kung Fu Hustle ( 功夫 , Gōngfu , 2004) by Stephen Chow , Mission: Impossible III (2006) by JJ Abrams , Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer (2007) by Tim Story, and Transformers - Die Rache (2009) by Michael Bay . James Bond 007: Skyfall , released in 2012, is largely set in Shanghai.

Economy and Infrastructure


Shanghai at night
Shanghai at night

The city has long been one of the leading centers of the textile industry in the People's Republic of China. Other important branches of production are the manufacture of chemical and pharmaceutical products, vehicles (especially ships), machines, steel, paper and printed matter. In addition, electrotechnical and electronic systems and devices such as computers, radios and cameras are manufactured on a large scale.

With the beginning of the Chinese economic reforms in the early 1980s, Shanghai was initially overtaken by the southern provinces such as Guangdong . At the beginning of the 1990s, the Chinese government under Jiang Zemin invested a lot in Shanghai with the aim of creating a new economic center in East Asia.

Shanghai and Hong Kong are rivals for the rank of the largest economic metropolis in China. Hong Kong has the advantage of longer experience here, especially in banking. Shanghai has closer ties to the Chinese hinterland and the central government in Beijing . At the same time, there is more space for new investments in Shanghai, while space is limited in Hong Kong.

The Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE) was founded in 1990 and is now the most important exchange on the Chinese mainland . In 2002, the Shanghai Gold Exchange (SGE), the largest commodity exchange in China for trading in precious metals ( gold , Silver and platinum ). In a ranking of the world's most important financial centers, Shanghai took 6th place (as of 2018).

Economic growth in Shanghai has been in double digits since 1991. This makes the city the only region in China that achieves this. The annual economic growth in Shanghai is around twelve percent and fell to 8 percent by 2015. In 2015, Shanghai had a GDP of 2.50 trillion yuan (401 billion US dollars), ranking 12th among the provinces of China. The GDP per capita was 113,511 yuan (US $ 17,090 / PPP: US $ 32,684) per year (3rd place among the Chinese provinces). The level of prosperity in the province was 210% of the Chinese average and was thus roughly on par with the Czech Republic . Shanghai is the Chinese city with the highest economic output and was ranked 8th worldwide in the ranking of cities according to gross domestic product (purchasing power adjusted) in 2014.

1984 in Anting of Volkswagen as a joint venture , the first car factory with "Western" vehicles built. Shanghai Volkswagen had a market share of around 60 percent in China, which is falling steadily due to increasing competition. However, the high import tariffs on cars from abroad make them even more expensive. After China joined the World Trade Organization (WTO) on the occasion of the APEC conference in 2001, import tariffs were gradually reduced.

Apart from the 300,000 or so Taiwanese, there are around 50,000 foreigners working in Shanghai. These come mainly from Japan, the USA, South Korea, Singapore, Germany (7000), France and Canada. Most of them work in companies with external capital or in permanent foreign missions.


Rail transport

The city owes a large part of its economic importance to the excellent transport connections in the railway network of the People's Republic of China . Shanghai is the most important railway hub with good connections to the north and south of China. The city has four main train stations. The actual main train station is north of the Suzhou Canal. In 2010, the Shanghai-Hongqiao station, the largest station in Asia and since then the most important station in the metropolis, opened. Far in the north-west of the city is Shanghai's West Railway Station , where some long-distance trains reach their destination, including those from Inner Mongolia. The southern station with connections to the southern provinces was opened in August 2006 and is the first circular station building.


The port traditionally has a connection to the Imperial Canal and is today a transshipment point for part of the foreign trade as well as internal Chinese coastal trade. The six terminals of the mainland port are operated by the largely urban company Shanghai International Port Group . The new Yangshan deep water port in Hangzhou Bay has been in operation since 2005 and will be expanded further until 2020; it already handles the majority of international container handling . The entirety of the seaports of Shanghai has been the world's largest transshipment point since 2007; they have surpassed Singapore , Rotterdam and Hong Kong. The Yangtze River boats and coastal ships to Ningbo , Wenzhou and Putuo Shan pass the Bund on their way from Shiliupu Pier in the south. The coastal ships to Qingdao , Dalian and Fuzhou use the Gongping Lu Pier, which is located in a north-easterly direction from the Bund. The ships from Japan and South Korea dock at the international passenger terminal east of the Pujiang Hotel .

Large parts of the urban area are criss-crossed by a dense network of canals for smaller inland vessels , barges and barges, which have an important distribution and disposal function for bulk goods, food, building materials, excavation and rubble, household and industrial waste and the like. take over and so relieve the roads. The main and side canals with a width of 50 to 10 meters form the world's largest artificial urban canal system. In many places around the small transshipment points and inland ports, industrial areas have formed. Shanghai also takes a top position with its several thousand bridges.

Shanghai Pudong Airport, December 2005
Transrapid in Shanghai, December 2004

air traffic

Shanghai has two airports, Shanghai Pudong Airport , which is used for international flights, and Shanghai Hongqiao Domestic Airport . Pudong and Hongqiao are both operated by the Shanghai Airport Group, with a total passenger capacity of 100 million.

The new international airport, inaugurated on the national holiday in 1999, is 45 kilometers east of the city at the mouth of the Yangtze River. Almost all international flights are handled through him. On December 31, 2002, the Transrapid Shanghai , a magnetic levitation train , built in cooperation with Germany , started its maiden voyage from Longyang Street Station to Pudong Airport. The construction costs amounted to around 1.2 billion euros, the maximum speed for 12 out of 59 journeys in each direction per day is 431  km / h , otherwise 300 km / h. The Transrapid takes eight minutes for the 30-kilometer route. The operator is Shanghai Maglev Transportation Co. Ltd.

The older and smaller Shanghai Hongqiao Airport is 15 kilometers west of the city and is mainly used for domestic traffic. It was expanded in March 2010 with a new terminal and a second runway, so that its capacity is now 40 million passengers a year.

Junction of the Hochautobahn in the city center

Local transport

Considering the increase in population and the city's more intense economic activity, extensive construction work began in the early 1990s. As part of this work, six-lane elevated motorways and new bridges have been built.


On April 10, 1995, the first 16.1 kilometer section of the Shanghai Metro was inaugurated. At the moment (2016) there are 14 subway lines in Shanghai. While line 1 runs north-south and line 2 runs east-west, the elevated line 4 circles the expanded center of the city; Line 3, which runs from south to north, runs partly on the same rails. Line 5 is an extension of Line 1 from Xinzhuang to Minhang. An expansion of the network to a length of 300 kilometers is planned by 2020.


A tram network with a length of 80 kilometers is currently being built in the Songjiang District . This network is then to be expanded to a length of 800 km by 2020. The first section with a length of 13.9 km and 20 stops was put into operation on December 28, 2018. It leads from Zhongchen Road via the Songjiang University Town to Canghua Road. Further sections were added in August 2019.

City buses, trolleybuses

Shanghai is also home to the world's oldest continuously operating trolleybus network , and one of the largest in China. It opened on November 15, 1914. The city ​​buses that run everywhere are overcrowded, especially in the morning and evening rush hour . You are slow to go given the congested streets and few lines run through the whole city.


The Waibaidu Bridge is the only historical truss bridge still in existence (picture 1930s).

On June 8, 2003, construction of the Hangzhou Bay Bridge began in the south of the city, with a length of 36 kilometers it was the longest sea bridge in the world when it opened in 2008. In 2011 it lost that status to the Jiaozhou Bay Bridge . The total investment is 11.8 billion yuan , equivalent to 1.42 billion US dollars. The six-lane bridge has spanned Hangzhou Bay since its completion in May 2008 and connects Shanghai with Ningbo ( 寧波  /  宁波 ) in Zhejiang Province . The 32.5 kilometer long Donghai Daqiao Bridge was completed in 2005 . This connects the current port of Luchao on the Shanghai coast with the new deep-water port on the island of Yangshan in Hangzhou Bay, which is being expanded. In October 2009, the Shanghai Changjiang Daqiao was opened to road traffic. This structure, a combination of tunnel and bridge, connects the Shanghai islands of Chongming and Changxing with Pudong.

Street names

A not inconsiderable problem with the road network is that the city has a total of 838 easily confused or even identical street names. The Yucai Street (literally translated , draw scholars ) is even ten times. This problem has essentially existed since 1958, when ten counties in neighboring Jiangsu Province were incorporated. By September 2006, this problem was to be resolved by renaming the streets, which would require 20,000 signs to be changed and 36,000 citizens to have their documents changed.


The Shanghai Institute for Advanced Studies (SIAS) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences / Institute for Biological Sciences, Shanghai and the Max Planck Society

In addition to Shanghai Jiaotong University for Transport and Traffic, which opened in 1896, Fudan University , Eastern China University of Education , Tongji University and Shanghai Foreign Language University, there are several technical colleges and universities as well as numerous libraries in Shanghai.

Fudan University is one of the leading universities in the People's Republic of China. It was founded in 1905 as the Fudan Public School . It received the name Fudan from its founder, the renowned Jesuit historian Ma Xiangbo (1840–1939) after a quote from the Confucian classics. In 1917 it was converted into a private school. At the beginning of the Second Sino-Japanese War in 1937, she was relocated to Chongqing inland, appointed Fudan University in 1941 and relocated back to Shanghai in 1946.

The Tongji University is one of the most prestigious universities in China. It was founded in 1907 by the doctor Erich Paulun as a German medical school on the initiative of the Consul General Wilhelm Knappe . The name Tongji, which she was given in 1912 when it was expanded to include technical courses, is derived from the Chinese phrase tongji hua chuan (= rowing a boat together ). In 1923 it was transferred to the university and in 1937 because of the war it was first relocated to Zhejiang Province . As the front drew nearer, it moved to Jiangxi Province , then to Yunnan, and later even to Sichuan . After the end of the Second World War , it was moved back to Shanghai in 1946.

The Shanghai Foreign Language University, known in the English-speaking world as Shanghai International Studies University, SISU , is one of the country's major universities . It emerged from the Shanghai Foreign Language Institute, founded in 1949. Since 1983 the university has maintained a lively cooperation with the University of Heidelberg . Since 2002 there has been a course in German / Business that was designed together with the University of Bayreuth .

ShanghaiTech University, founded jointly by the Shanghai City Council and the Chinese Academy of Sciences in 2013, is located in the Zhangjiang Hi-Tech Park in the Pudong district and aims to become a top national and international research university.

The German School Shanghai is located in the districts of Qingpu and Pudong , currently the largest German school abroad with over 1000 students.


View of Pudong, taken from the “Bund” at night
View of Shanghai, taken from Pudong
Panorama of the “Bund” at night, taken from Pudong
Panorama of the “Bund” by day, taken from Pudong


Shanghai was the birthplace of numerous prominent personalities. The best known are the writers Zhang Ailing , Zhou Weihui and Ingrid Noll , the writer James Graham Ballard , the biochemist Edmond Henri Fischer , the painter Yan Pei-Ming , the actress Joan Chen , the stage actor Gert Voss , the directors Wong Kar- Wai and Terence Young and the founding father of video rental stores, George Atkinson .


Forced seafaring recruitment was named shanghai after the city .

See also


  • Zhi Hao Chu: Modern Chinese architecture in the field of tension between its own tradition and foreign cultures: demonstrated using the example of living culture in the city of Shanghai. Verlag Peter Lang, Frankfurt am Main 2003, ISBN 3-631-50437-3
  • Oliver Corff: The Shanghai language community. Brockmeyer, Bochum 1994, ISBN 3-8196-0215-1
  • Astrid Freyeisen: Shanghai and the politics of the Third Reich. Würzburg, Königshausen and Neumann, 2000, ISBN 3-8260-1690-4 .
  • Steffi Schmitt: Shanghai Promenade. Walks between the times. Old China Hand Press, Hong Kong 2003, ISBN 962-7872-48-2
  • Steffi Schmitt: Shanghai Promenade. Walks between the times. 2nd edition, Abera Verlag, Hamburg 2008, ISBN 978-3-934376-78-6
  • Bindong Sun: Institutions and regional economic growth using the example of Shanghai. Technical University of Berlin, 2004, ISBN 3-7983-1942-1

Web links

Wiktionary: Shanghai  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations
Commons : Shanghai  album with pictures, videos and audio files
 Wikinews: Shanghai  - on the news
Wikivoyage: Shanghai  Travel Guide

Individual evidence

  1. a b c National Bureau of Statistics of China: Communiqué of the National Bureau of Statistics of People's Republic of China on Major Figures of the 2010 Population Census 1 No. 2. Accessed October 8, 2016 .
  2. a b c Shanghai Statistics: Land area, population and density of population in districts and counties  ( page no longer available , search in web archivesInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.@1@ 2Template: Dead Link /  
  3. a b Shanghai Statistics: Resident population in main years  ( page no longer available , search in web archivesInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.@1@ 2Template: Dead Link /  
  4. Maritime.De ( Memento of the original from June 29, 2013 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  5. Lu Guimeng (Tang Dynasty) on fishing equipment: "If bamboo sticks are lined up on the seashore, one speaks of Hu."
  6. Extreme temperature records - worldwide ( Memento of the original from October 8, 2007 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  7. Official Xuhui District Website: Geography and Climate
  8. ^ Washington Post: Shanghai sets new all time record again
  9. ^ China Meteorological Administration
  10. Mareike Raabe: Shanghai- a megacity with problems and potential . 1st edition. GRIN Verlag, Norderstedt 2007, ISBN 978-3-640-38675-8 .
  11. Eric N. Danielson: Shanghai and the Yangzi Delta. Marshall Cavendish / Times Edition, Singapore 2004, ISBN 981-232-597-2 (English), here p. 10
  12. Ulrike Eifler: Neoliberal Globalization and the Labor Movement in China. ibidem-Verlag, 2012, p. 90.
  13. Ursula Krechel: Shanghai far from where , young and young, Salzburg / Vienna, 2008, ISBN 978-3-902497-44-4
  14. 2012 年 上海市 国民经济 和 社会 发展 统计 公报 February 26, 2013
  15. World Urbanization Prospects - Population Division - United Nations. Retrieved July 23, 2018 .
  16. Mercer's 2018 Quality of Living Rankings. Retrieved July 30, 2018 .
  17. Yang Xiong appointed as acting mayor of Shanghai ( Memento from December 31, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) Xinhua on December 26, 2012 (accessed January 4, 2013)
  18. Two municipalities get new leaders ( Memento from November 21, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) China Daily from November 20, 2012 (accessed November 20, 2012)
  19. CPC reshuffles provincial-level chiefs in: Global Times, October 30, 2017, p. 3, accessed November 1, 2017
  20. Shanghai Municipality: City Partnerships ( Memento from February 4, 2008 in the Internet Archive )
  21. Shanghai Statistics: City Partnerships ( Memento of December 24, 2008 in the Internet Archive )
  22. ^ Shanghai Oriental Art Center. Archived from the original on June 28, 2011 ; Retrieved April 10, 2011 .
  23. ^ Aurora Museum - a new cultural landmark in Pudong., June 6, 2014, accessed December 22, 2016 .
  24. Tripwolf: MARCO POLO - Confucius Temple / Wen Miao. Retrieved April 29, 2011 .
  25. China Daily - Jing'an Temple predates city's birth . Retrieved April 29, 2011 .
  26. Taipei representation in the Federal Republic of Germany: Taiwan Aktuell No. 406/2006 ( Memento of March 4, 2016 in the Internet Archive )
  27. Focus: Super Bunker for Protection from Taiwan , July 30, 2006
  28. Shanghai Disney Resort website , accessed November 8, 2016
  29. Design: Tang Shichu, dedication among others with Gerhard Schröder , see. Report A statue with true relativity in Shanghai Daily June 6, 2008.
  30. Holger Apfel and Christoph Hein: At the silk thread. , July 10, 2010 , accessed March 22, 2012
  31. ^ The Global Financial Centers Index 23. Archived from the original on March 27, 2018 ; accessed on July 13, 2018 .
  32. :
  33. ^ Alan Berube, Jesus Leal Trujillo, Tao Ran, and Joseph Parilla: Global Metro Monitor . In: Brookings . January 22, 2015 ( [accessed December 4, 2017]).
  34. ^ Shanghai Metro: Metro Lines' operation. Retrieved July 24, 2016 .
  37. of January 2, 2019 (English), accessed on August 13, 2019
  38. of August 12, 2019 (English), accessed on August 13, 2019
  39. Donghai Bridge. In: Structurae
  40. ^ Chemical and Engineering News October 19, 2015
  41. ^ Manfred Lauck: Campus courier. In: October 2009, archived from the original on January 11, 2012 .;
  42. As early as 1895, a German school was founded in Shanghai, which was named Kaiser Wilhelm School and existed until 1945. The current German School Shanghai is an independent new establishment.
This version was added to the list of articles worth reading on June 7, 2005 .