The significance of the regional carbon (C) balance of vegetation restoration to global change was studied in Guangdong Province, one of the most populated provinces in China. The percentage of the province in forestland cover increased steadily from 26.23% in 1979 to 50.11% in 1998 owing to restoration of forests. During this period, the area increase in the conifer forest was 424.83 × 104 ha, whereas the area in broad-leaved, mixed, and other forests increased by 68.82 × 104, 18.94 × 104, and 60.46 × 104 ha, respectively. C sequestration by forest soils from 1979 to 1998 was 389.36 Mt, equivalent to 1.43 Pg fixed carbon dioxide (CO2). The total annual CO2 sequestration by forests and the soils was 118.05 Mt, which was about half of the annual CO2 emission in Guangdong. The role of forest management and restoration in improving the carbon balance is discussed.