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Poverty alleviation bears fruitful results in Ningde, Fujian

chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2020-06-15

依山而建的寿宁县下党乡。 王东明 摄_副本.jpg

Xiadang in Shouning county, Ningde, East China's Fujian province boasts picturesque landscapes with flourishing green trees and clear waters under blue skies. [Photo by Wang Dongming/chinanews.com]

The mountain village of Xiadang in Shouning county, Ningde, East China's Fujian province was once a poor area and old revolutionary base, but it has now become a thriving ecotourism village thanks to a poverty reduction campaign that started 35 years ago, according to a news report on June 10.

"Xiadang was the only village in Fujian that had no paved roads, tap water, electricity or office buildings," according to Wang Guangchao, a native of the village, who has witnessed the radical changes that have taken place over the past 35 years.

Relying on its strong ecosystems and tourism resources, the village has vigorously promoted the development of rural tourism, innovated and optimized its industrialized business model, and boosted people's incomes as part of its poverty alleviation efforts.


Xiadang in Shouning county, Ningde, East China's Fujian province becomes a renowned tourist town known for ecotourism and red tourism thanks to the poverty alleviation efforts made by the government. [Photo by Wang Dongming/chinanews.com]

Through 35 years of hard work, the village has become a renowned tourist town for ecotourism and red tourism. The local government has stepped up efforts to build the "Refreshing Fujian, unforgettable Xiadang" brand, and has consistently afforested the village, repaired old roads and opened rural entertainment areas, all of which have driven the development of the tourism industry. Homestays and agritainment have also developed rapidly in Xiadang.

Although in his seventies, Wang is still full of energy and enthusiasm. In 2016, he renovated his old house and opened a teahouse, which is visited by dozens of customers each day and has helped increase Wang and his wife's annual income from 20,000 yuan ($2,833) in 2017 to more than 40,000 yuan last year.

According to local authorities, Xiadang lifted all 503 people in the village out of poverty in 2019, and the village's per capita income rose from 186 yuan in 1988 to over 14,000 yuan last year.

In addition to the tourism industry, tea planting is also a pillar industry in the village. In 2014, the village launched a project using advanced technologies to offer customized services to consumers, allowing them to monitor the entire tea production process on their cellphones.

The project helps bring in 6,000 yuan a year per tea farmer from a plot covering 0.06 hectares, up from about 2,000 yuan in previous years.

Wang Mingzu, Party secretary of Xiadang village, said that they will continue to speed up the development of the tourism and tea industries, offer a series of services for visitors, and promote its folk customs, ensuring tourists receive an unforgettable experience in the village. 

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