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Sunday, February 15, 2009

A little about China, Guangxi, and Beiliu

Sylvie is living in a SWI (Social Welfare Institute) in Beiliu City in the Guangxi Autonomous Region of China. Guangxi is located in the South Eastern corner of China (shown in red). Vietnam borders Guangxi, along with the Gulf of Tonkin. The capital city is Nanning, and the official languages of the region are Mandarin and Zhuang.

Guangxi is a mountainous region with many rivers. Several cities are considered tourist destinations due to the jagged mountain peaks and rivers.

Guangxi has a subtropical climate. Summers are generally long and hot. Average annual temperature is 17 - 23⁰ Celsius, while average annual precipitation is 1250 to 1750 mm.

Guangxi is an Autonomous Region of China, rather than a province. Like Chinese provinces, an autonomous region has its own local government, but an autonomous region theoretically has more legislative rights. In practice, they only have the right to appoint the governor (from the local minority)

An Autonomous Region is a minority entity which has a higher population of a particular minority ethnic group. There are five autonomous regions in China: the Tibetan people in Tibet, the Zhuang in Guangxi (#5 shown below), the Uyghur in Xinjiang, the Mongols in Inner Mongolia, and the Hui in Ningxia.

Information about Beiliu City, where Sylvie is living:

  • The 2,457-square-kilometer Beiliu City has a population of 1.16 million, 87 percent of whom are engaged in agriculture.

  • Beiliu City is most notable for its reputation for fine ceramics, which goes back to the Southern Song Dynasty (1127-1279). According to historic records, Beiliu ceramic wares have the sheen of jade, and when tapped, emit a bell-like ring.

  • Export of local ceramics began in the 1950s. Today, 95 percent of the output of local ceramic enterprises are exported to over 70 countries and regions in the world, accounting for over two thirds of Guangxi's total.

When we go to China, we are hoping to purchase some of these fine ceramics, specifically tea cups. Anyone who has been to my home has seen my tea cup collection from my two grandmothers. I made sure to pick a picture that included flowers to remind me of Grandma Fleming, I'm still looking for one with birds!


  1. Your daughter, Sylvie, reminds me of my daughter from Beiliu also. We adopted our daughter in 2006. I have a Beiliu Yahoo Group if you are interested in joining....

    1. yes, I will coming to beiliu soon.

  2. Hello
    I need help. I will be teaching in beiliu and I NEED a gym, fitness center, health club. Please help.