Beihai is a prefecture-level city in the south of Guangxi, People's Republic of China. The name of the city means 'north of the sea' in Chinese, signifying its status as a seaport on the north shore of the Gulf of Tonkin, which has granted it historical importance as a port of international trade for Guangxi, Hunan, Hubei, Sichuan, Guizhou, and Yunnan. Between the years 2006 and 2020, Beihai is predicted to be the world's fastest growing city. Beihai has a large shipyard, but most of the money generated in the city is derived from trade. The dialect spoken throughout Beihai is 'Baihua', a Cantonese dialect; Mandarin is not often used or spoken by the population, though it is the official language used in government, business and post-elementary-level education throughout mainland China. It governs the small islands of Weizhou and Xieyang, and is directly north of Hainan Island.
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