|Country||Republic of China (Taiwan)|
|Boroughs||2 cities, 16 (2 urban, 14 rural) townships|
|• County Magistrate||Weng Chang-liang (DPP)|
|• Total||1,901.67 km2 (734.24 sq mi)|
|Area rank||10 of 22|
|• Rank||14 of 22|
|Time zone||UTC+8 (National Standard Time)|
The former Chinese placename was Tsu-lo-san (Chinese: 諸羅山; pinyin: Zhūluóshān; Pe̍h-ōe-jī: Chu-lô-san), a representation of the original Formosan-language name Tirosen. A shortened version, Tsulo, was then used to name Tsulo County, which originally covered the underdeveloped northern two-thirds of the island. In 1704, the county seat was moved to Tsulosan, the site of modern-day Chiayi City. Following the 1723 Zhu Yigui rebellion, the county was reduced in size. In 1787, the county and city were renamed Kagee (嘉義; literally: 'commended righteousness') to acknowledge the citizens' loyalty during the Lin Shuangwen rebellion.
After the handover of Taiwan from Japan to the Republic of China on 25 October 1945, the area of present-day Chiayi County was administered under Tainan County. In October 1950, Chiayi County was established as a county of Taiwan Province. Chiayi City was designated as the county seat.
In March 1989, Wufong Township was renamed Alishan Township. In July 1991, Taibao Township was reorganized as Taibao City. In November 1991, Chiayi County government relocated the county seat from Dongshiliao Farm to Hsiangho New Village in Taibao City. Puzi Township was reorganized as a county-controlled city in September 1992.
Chiayi County borders Mount Yu to the east, Taiwan Strait to the west, Tainan City to the south and Yunlin County to the north. It spans over 1,903 km2 (735 sq mi), about 5.35% of the area of Taiwan. Chiayi County is located along the Tropic of Cancer.
Chiayi County is divided into 2 cities, 2 urban townships, 13 rural townships and 1 mountain indigenous township. Taibao City is the seat of Chiayi County and is home to Chiayi County Government. The Chiayi County Council is however located in Puzi City. Weng Chang-liang of the Democratic Progressive Party is the incumbent Magistrate of Chiayi County.
Color indicates statutory language status of the Formosan language in the respective subdivision.
|Source:"Populations by city and country in Taiwan". Ministry of the Interior Population Census.|
The current population of Chiayi County as of December 2014 is 524,783 people. The county has been experiencing a population decline since 2009 due to higher migration out of the county and higher death rate than birth rate. In 2013, the birthrate in the county was 5.89, lower than the average Taiwan of 8.91, the second lowest after Keelung.
Chiayi County is home to the government-owned National Chung Cheng University and National Chiayi University. Private universities and colleges including Chang Gung University of Science and Technology, Nanhua University, Toko University and WuFeng University. Education-related affairs in the county is managed by the Educational Department of Chiayi County Government.
Over the past 20 years, Chiayi County had often been left out in the regional economic development due to its less strategic location, lack of infrastructure and appropriate industrial land to attract manufacturers to set up factories in the area. All of the existing industrial parks in the county were built before 1981. Class 2 and class 3 industries have been developing slowly throughout Chiayi, thus the economic development is sluggish as well, resulting in slow urban development.
Three industrial parks named the Dapumei Industrial Park (大埔美工業區), Ma Chou Hou Industrial Park (馬稠後工業區) and Budai Intelligent Industrial Park are currently under planning in the county. Industrial parks in the neighboring counties and cities also contributed to the difficulty of industrial developments in Chiayi County.
Incinerator in the county is Lutsao Refuse Incineration Plant.
Notable museums, cultural centers and monuments in Chiayi County are the Mei-Ling Fine Arts Museum, National Radio Museum, Ping Huang Coffee Museum, Southern Branch of the National Palace Museum, Xikou Township Cultural Life Center and Tropic of Cancer Monument.
Bordered by mountains on one side and sea on the other side, Chiayi County holds three major national parks, which are Alishan National Scenic Area, Southwest Coast National Scenic Area and Siraya National Scenic Area, each represents a unique view of nature's wonders, from mountains, plains to ocean views. It also houses the Chukou Nature Center, Haomeiliao Wetland and Meishan Park.
Taiwan High Speed Rail stops at Chiayi Station in Taibao City. Taiwan Railways Administration stations include the Dalin Station, Minxiong Station, Nanjing Station and Shuishang Station. The Alishan Forest Railway leads to Alishan National Scenic Area, with stations in Zhuqi Township, Meishan Township, and Alishan Township.
- "Welcome to Chiayi County Government-Population-Population". cyhg.gov.tw. Archived from the original on 2014-03-28. Retrieved 2014-05-04.
- Campbell, William (1903). "Explanatory Notes". Formosa under the Dutch: described from contemporary records, with explanatory notes and a bibliography of the island. London: Kegan Paul. p. 549. OCLC 644323041.
- "Welcome to Chiayi County Government-History-Republic of China Era (1945－)". cyhg.gov.tw. Archived from the original on 2014-03-28.
- "Welcome to Chiayi County Government-History-Republic of China Era (1945－)". Cyhg.gov.tw. Archived from the original on 2014-03-28. Retrieved 2014-05-04.
- "Welcome to Chiayi County Government-Geography-Geography". cyhg.gov.tw. Archived from the original on 2015-09-23. Retrieved 2014-08-18.
- "Geography". Chiayi County Government. Retrieved 3 May 2019.
Chiayi County(2 cities, 2 towns, 14 villages )
- 地理區域 [Geography]. 嘉義縣政府全球資訊網. Retrieved 3 May 2019.
- "Chiayi's low birthrate is problem for education". taipeitimes.com.
- "Attractions > Hot Spots > Chiayi County >". taiwan.net.tw.
- Liao, George (1 October 2017). "An amazing trip to Taiwan's Penghu County in three days". Taiwan News. Retrieved 3 October 2017.
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