Benxi (Chinese: ; pinyin: Běnxī) is a prefecture-level city located in the east of Liaoning province, People's Republic of China, south-southeast of the provincial capital Shenyang. Its population was 1,709,538 at the 2010 census whom 1,011,377 lived in the built-up area made of 3 urban districts (Pingshan, Xihu and Mingshan). It was founded as a metallurgical center in 1915. Benxi Iron and Steel Company (Bengang) is the largest employer in the city, and used to be the fourth-largest steel company in China. The second-largest industry in Benxi is coal mining. Benxi has pollution problems due to steel production and coal mining.


Location of Benxi City jurisdiction in Liaoning
Location of the city centre in Liaoning
Coordinates: 41°18′N 123°46′E
CountryPeople's Republic of China
Districts and Counties
  CPC BenxiCommittee Secretary
  MayorTian Shuhuai (田树槐)
  Prefecture-level city8,435 km2 (3,257 sq mi)
907 km2 (350 sq mi)
131 m (430 ft)
 (2010 census)[1]
  Prefecture-level city1,709,538
Time zoneUTC+8 (China Standard)
Postal code
Area code(s)24
ISO 3166 codeCN-LN-05
Licence plates辽E
Administrative division code210500

During the disaster of Air France flight AF447, Benxi Iron and Steel Company lost 5 employees, including the executive Chen Chiping who was the wife of Liaoning's provincial governor.[2]


As early as 400,000 years ago, there were people living in Benxi prefecture, which was indicated by Miaohou Mountain ruins with human fossils and stone tools explored in this region.

The worst coal mining disaster in the world took place on April 26, 1942 in Benxihu Colliery. A coal-dust explosion killed 1,549 miners working that day, making it the worst disaster in the history of coal mining and the second worst recorded industrial accident. The explosion sent flames bursting out of the mine shaft entrance. Miners' relatives rushed to the site but were denied entry by a cordon of Japanese guards who erected electric fences to keep them out.[3] In an attempt to curtail the fire underground, the Japanese shut off the ventilation and sealed the pit head. Witnesses say that the Japanese did not evacuate the pit fully before sealing it, trapping many Chinese workers underground to suffocate in the smoke.[4]

Administrative divisions

Benxi contains 4 districts and 2 autonomous counties for the Manchu nation:

# Name Chinese Hanyu Pinyin Population (2003 est.) Area (km²) Density (/km²)
1 Pingshan District 平山区 Píngshān Qū 350,000 177 1,977
2 Xihu District 溪湖区 Xīhú Qū 220,000 320 688
3 Mingshan District 明山区 Míngshān Qū 300,000 410 732
4 Nanfen District 南芬区 Nánfēn Qū 80,000 619 129
5 Benxi Manchu Autonomous County 本溪满族
Běnxī Mǎnzú
300,000 3,362 89
6 Huanren Manchu Autonomous County 桓仁满族
Huánrén Mǎnzú
300,000 3,547 85

Within these there are 25 counties, 40 villages and towns, 229 communities and 289 village committees.


Benxi is located within latitude 40° 49'–41° 35' N and longitude 123° 34'–125° 46' E, and has a total area of 8,411.31 square kilometres (3,247.62 sq mi). To the east is Jilin City (Jilin), to the south is Dandong, to the southwest is Anshan (though the two don't actually border each other), to the west is Liaoyang, to the northwest is Shenyang, and to the north is Fushun. The area has many mountains as well as great forest coverage (74%).


Benxi has a monsoon-influenced humid continental climate (Köppen Dwa), characterised by hot, humid summers, due to the East Asian monsoon, and long, cold and windy, but dry winters, due to the Siberian anticyclone. The four seasons here are distinctive. Nearly half of the annual rainfall occurs in July and August alone. The monthly 24-hour average temperature ranges from −11.5 °C (11.3 °F) in January to 24.0 °C (75.2 °F) in July, and the annual mean is 7.83 °C (46.1 °F). With monthly percent possible sunshine ranging from 38% in July to 63% in February, the city receives 2,325 hours of bright sunshine annually.

Climate data for Benxi (1971–2000)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) −5
Average low °C (°F) −16.9
Average precipitation mm (inches) 7.9
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.1 mm) 5.0 5.0 6.2 8.2 9.6 12.3 14.3 12.2 8.3 7.6 6.8 4.8 100.3
Average relative humidity (%) 64 58 53 50 55 66 76 78 73 64 64 65 64
Mean monthly sunshine hours 164.4 186.5 220.5 230.2 240.8 213.0 173.5 183.0 203.7 200.8 161.1 147.5 2,325
Percent possible sunshine 56 63 60 58 54 48 38 43 55 59 55 52 52
Source: China Meteorological Administration


Benxi's economy grew 10% in 2012 to a regional GDP of 111.24 billion CNY.[5] Ranked eighth out of fourteen prefecture level cities in Liaoning, the city's GDP accounted for approximately 4% of provincial total.[6] Urban per-capita disposable income was 22,466 CNY, and consumption per capita 16,064 CNY.[7]

With 46 large and medium-sized enterprises in Benxi, main industrial products are raw iron (14 million tons), steel (13 million tons), finished steel (12 million tons), cement (3 million tons) and raw coal (1 million tons). In 2008, 92,615 people were employed in manufacturing, 20,368 in education, 19,228 in public administration and social organizations, 17,913 persons in the mining industry, and 12,997 in transportation and storage. According to the type of business ownership, 63,000 were employed in private companies.[8]

Uranium is mined in the region.

As of 2009, Asia's biggest iron ore mine, which is reported to possess more than 3 billion tons of proven reserves, has been found in this region.[9]


The city contains the Benxi Campus of the Liaoning University of Traditional Chinese Medicine (LNUTCM).[10]

In the perspective of high school education, the Benxi Senior High School (Benxi Gaozhong) is located in the city, while the school faced severe controversy on the unreasonably-high number of Sporting Students.[11] However, the currency of the school is improving with the former-principal Pang Mingrong (庞鸣嵘) dismissed from the school, Pang was infamous and controversial for the injustice in his attitude towards students of different 'classes,' which builds on test scores, however revered by his students.[12]

Tourist activities

Benxi is rich with tourist attractions. The eastern side of the prefecture is covered with mountains, caves and lakes with low population, making the various parks in that area popular.

The Benxi Lake, located at the urban area of Xihu district in Benxi, after which the city was named in Qing dynasty, is the tiniest lake in the world. With an area less than 15 sq. meters and a daily rate of flow at approximately 20,000 tons, the lake acts as a famous tourist attraction of the city.

The Benxi Water Cave National Park is a subterranean river, some 3,000 meters long, 2 meters deep and wide enough for 20-30 boats. It flows through this cave situated 35 km (22 mi) east of Benxi city. The cave is filled with countless stalactites and stone flowers, pillars and curtains.

Wunü Mountain National Park is an area of natural beauty. The park also contains the remains of an ancient Goguryeo capital city. As such the site has been recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.[13]

Guanmenshan National Forest Park is an valley of outstanding natural beauty. Secluded trails run up and down the valley. The area is particularly popular in autumn when the leaves of the many maple trees that line the valley turn bright red.


Sister cities


  1. bxgk Archived March 20, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  2. "AF447 victim". Archived from the original on 6 June 2009. Retrieved 4 June 2009.
  4. "Chinazhaoge Blog" (in Chinese). Retrieved 7 August 2010.
  5. 2012年本溪市国民经济和社会发展统计公报
  6. Profiles of China Provinces, Cities and Industrial Parks
  7. 2012年本溪市国民经济和社会发展统计公报
  8. China Liaoning Business Guide Archived July 19, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  9. "Asia's biggest iron ore mine found in Benxi China". International Business Times. 23 June 2009. Retrieved 13 August 2013.
  10. "History." Liaoning University of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Retrieved on July 24, 2016. "Benxi campus: Liufenggou, Pingtai Village, Shiqiaozi Sub-district, Benxi Hi-Tech Development Zone, Benxi, Liaoning, People's Republic of China. Post code 117000"
  11. 网易. "Liáoníng běnxī 1 suǒ zhōngxué 87 míng gāokǎo tǐ yōushēng bèi zhíyí zàojiǎ_wǎngyì xīnwén zhōngxīn" 辽宁本溪1所中学87名高考体优生被质疑造假_网易新闻中心 [Liaoning Benxi 1 Middle School 87 college entrance examination body was questioned fraud]. (in Chinese). Retrieved 2016-09-16.
  12. "Pang Mingrong" 庞鸣嵘_百度百科. (in Chinese). Baidu.
  13. "China - UNESCO World Heritage Centre". UNESCO. Retrieved 13 August 2013.
  14. "Interactive City Directory". Sister Cities International. Retrieved 11 March 2014.
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