|UNESCO World Heritage designation|
Indeed, an international institution has played a key role in the development of Xi’an into a moderate-sized city – moderate by Chinese standards, as Xi’an’s population’s of 8 million is considerably smaller than Beijing’s 19 million and Shanghai’s 23 million.
That institution is UNESCO, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. As told by our excellent tour guide, Connie, UNESCO put Xi’an on the map in 1987, the year it inscribed the Mausoleum of the First Qin Emperor on its list of World Heritage Sites.
If the tomb’s official name doesn’t ring a bell, its contents will. This is where China’s terracotta warriors are found.
In the meantime Xi'an seems likely to enjoy continued growth, not only from tourism but also from textiles, aeronautics, and pharmaceuticals.