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Image Caption: STS009-033-1276 Hong Kong, China December 1983
Hong Kong, an important center of world commerce in the Far East that covers 399 square miles (1033 square kilometers), is discernible in this east-looking, low-oblique photograph. The tan circular area is the Chinese city of Shenzhen. Hong Kong lies adjacent to Guangdong (Kwangtung) Province in southeastern China on the estuary of the Canton River, east of Macao (not visible), and 90 miles (145 kilometers) southeast of the Chinese city of Guangzhou (Canton; not visible). Hong Kong is a free port, a bustling trade center, and a shipping and banking emporium. Major industries include textiles, garment mills, shipbuilding, food processing, plastics, electrical and electronic equipment, rubber products, machinery, chemicals, ceramics, furniture, jewelry, toys, motion picture production, insurance, printing and publishing, and tourism. Because of the mountainous and rocky terrain, approximately only one-seventh of the land is arable. Rice and vegetables are major crops. Ceded by China to Great Britain in 1841 the island of Hong Kong, together with the adjacent regions of Kowloon and the New Territories, was returned to China in 1997.