About Zhangjiagang

Zhangjiagang is a county-level city in Jiangsu province, China, and is an administrative division of Suzhou City. Zhangjiagang's population is around 1,300,000, with around 100,000 residents of the city proper (urban area). Natives of the area speak a variant of Wu Chinese, close to the Suzhou variant, and similar but distinct from Shanghainese. Communities surrounding the city are mostly rural, and their economies traditionally depended heavily on agriculture and water-based activities. The GDP reached RMB 140.2 billion yuan (US$20.5 billion) in 2009, a growth of 11.7% from 2008. The GDP per capita reached RMB 155,900 yuan (ca. US$22,800). In 2008, Zhangjiagang got the UN Habitat Scroll of Honour Award for setting a new trend in integrated urban-rural development and management through an initiative by the city's authorities to improve the quality of life for farmers and other residents in its hinterland