Tianjin is a metropolis in northern China and one of the five national central cities of the People's Republic of China (PRC). It is governed as one of the four direct-controlled municipalities of the PRC, and is thus under direct administration of the central government. Tianjin 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.
In terms of urban population, it is the sixth-largest city nationally, and its urban land area, not including Binhai, ranks fifth in the nation, after Beijing, Shanghai, Wuhan and Guangzhou. Tianjin 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; Binhai New Area, a new growth pole in China, constitutes the other core. With, as of the end of 2010, 285 Fortune 500 companies setting up branch offices, Binhai is a new growth pole in China and is a base of China's advanced industry, financial reform, and innovation. Tianjin was once home to foreign concessions in the late Qing Dynasty and early Republican era