Zhejiang Attracts Most Immigrants in 2019

Source: HangzhouTube, ECNS

Zhejiang prevailed over Guangdong last year as the number one provincial-level administrative region of China that saw the largest immigrant growth in 2019, the paper.cn reported on Saturday.

With a permanent resident population of 58.5 million, Zhejiang is only half the size of Guangdong but posted a yearly increase of immigrants of 841,000.

Over half of the growth in the province was in Hangzhou, capital of Zhejiang, with 494,000 new immigrants. The city launched a plan aimed at attracting at least 1 million university graduates to start their business or carry out innovative work by 2022, including providing talents with a one-time living allowance payment.

Chongqing and Fujian retained their attraction, ranking fourth and fifth in immigrant growth. Immigrants' net influx into Chongqing stood at 158,800 in 2018 and 134,700 in 2019. The number in Fujian was 24,000 in 2018 and 51,000 in 2019.

From the regional mix, 10 out of the 11 provincial regions with a positive immigrant influx were in the southern part of China, and a majority of the regions were along the east coast. The 16 provincial regions with a negative immigrant net influx were predominantly the ones in the northern part of China, especially the northeastern part.

In 2019, populations moving out of the northeast totaled 331,300, with Liaoning, 41,000, Jilin, 110,300 and Heilongjiang, 180,000.

The slowing down in economic growth in the three northeast provinces was one reason for the emigration. The GDP growth rate of Jilin was 3% year-on-year in 2019, the lowest among the country's 31 provincial level regions and Heilongjiang, with 4.2%, was the second lowest.

The biggest population outflow in 2019 was seen in Shandong, with 199,800 people migrating from the province. But "It kept the balance in general and was still in a very low ratio in population flow in terms of a province with more than 100.7 million permanent residents," Wang Guangzhou, researcher at the Institute of Population and Labor Economics was quoted as saying.