Shanghai is the most populous city in China. A global city, Shanghai exerts influence over
commerce, finance, culture, art, fashion, research and entertainment. The city is located at
the middle portion of the Chinese coast, and sits at the mouth of the Yangtze River.
Once a fishing and textiles town, Shanghai grew to importance in the 19th century due to its
favourable port location and as one of the cities opened to foreign trade by the 1842 Treaty
of Nanking. The city flourished as a centre of commerce between east and west, and became a
multinational hub of finance and business by the 1930s. After 1990, the economic reforms
introduced by Deng Xiaoping resulted in intense re-development and financing in Shanghai,
and in 2005 Shanghai became the world's largest cargo port.
The city is a tourist destination renowned for its historical landmarks such as the Bund and
City God Temple, and its modern and ever-expanding Pudong skyline including the Oriental
Pearl Tower. Today, Shanghai is the largest centre of commerce and finance in mainland
China, and has been described as the "showpiece" of the world's fastest-growing major
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