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Fujian's preferential policies aim to offer a design for change

By ZHANG YI | China Daily | Updated: 2021-02-26

Growing numbers of designers and architects from Taiwan are engaged in rural renovation work in Fujian province.

That's because local authorities have taken the lead in rolling out policies to help them practice their skills across the Straits.

The strategy of rural revitalization and "Supporting Fujian to explore integrated development across the Taiwan Straits" (to use the official phrase) have both been included in the national development plan for the next five years.

The move is aimed at providing a broad space for cross-Straits cooperation in rural construction.

Early in 2018, Fujian issued a preferential policy to encourage designers and architects from Taiwan to join rural building work, including giving villages an annual subsidy of 500,000 yuan ($77,000) for each expert they employed.

In 2018 and 2019, about 14 villages in Fujian received subsidies, and the number rose to 30 last year.

This year, 100 settlements are expected to receive the subsidies, according to the Fujian Housing and Urban-Rural Development Department.

By the end of last year, more than 200 designers and architects from Taiwan were involved in community revitalization projects in 117 villages in Fujian, the department said.

Lin Ruiliang, head of the department, said Taiwan has nearly 30 years' experience in community building and village improvements.

Officials on the Chinese mainland can learn from various ideas promoted by their counterparts on the island, including having experts living and working alongside villagers, he added.

"Fujian has more than 14,000 villages and is vigorously promoting the rural revitalization strategy. There is huge demand, which will create many opportunities for talented people in Taiwan," Lin said.

In the future, Fujian will explore ways of attracting experts from Taiwan to join the provincial construction industry association and push the joint formulation of industry standards between the two sides.

Fujian will also extend the cross-Straits cooperation model to other provinces, Lin said.

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