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'Three Changes Reform' changes fate of poverty-stricken villages in Guizhou

People’s Daily Online,August 14, 2018 Adjust font size:

An expert on poverty alleviation said that the successful implementation of the "Three Changes Reform" has turned poverty-stricken villages into a zero-poverty area and changed the fate of poor people in Liupanshui city of Southwest China’s Guizhou Province.

While talking to a delegation of foreign journalists from Asian, African and Latin American countries, Tao Zhengxue, inventor of the "Three Changes Reform" and also chief executive of an agriculture and tourism development company, said that due to successful implementation of his plan, the continuous growth of tourism and agricultural industries has gradually increased contribution to the economic and social development of the city.

By applying the plan, resources have been successfully transformed into assets, capital has been converted into business equity and farmers have been made shareholders in local companies. Today, Tao explained, there is zero poverty in the area.

“Due to poverty, I had to leave this village for thirty years. I came back to implement this poverty plan in 2012. Just three years ago, there was no road in the village. Now all necessary infrastructure has been constructed and the living standard has been improved with the support of the local government”, said Tao.

He added that efforts are underway to further improve agriculture, local tourism and quality of life by providing health, education and other basic services.

A local official told journalists that Tuole village near Panzhou city is home to thousands of ancient ginkgo trees, the oldest one being around 1,450 years old. But for hundreds of years, these treasures did nothing to help local people. However, as soon as these ancient ginkgo trees were taken into equity, the Ginkgo tree forests became a "cash cow".

Niangniang Mountain is considered the birthplace of the "Three Changes Reform", which has brought the people here tremendous welfare and helped alleviate poverty throughout the entire area in many industries.

“In recent years, local residents began to join the fruit industry. Local farmers provided their land to companies to grow kiwifruit, prickly pears, blueberries, wax berries, pomegranate and cherries. Now people here are earning more money than ever before, and are also shareholders of the fruit companies,” an official said.

Poverty alleviation linked to the development of tourism.

According to official reports, the number of tourists in Liupanshui city reached 11.09 million in the first quarter of 2018, an increase of 60.8 percent year-on-year. In 2017, the city received more than 30 million tourists and realized tourism revenue of over 20 billion yuan, up by 60.84 percent and 57.82 percent respectively compared with the same period of the previous year. In 2017, the added value of tourism accounted for 6.8 percent of local GDP.

The development of tourism has led to the development of transportation, catering and accommodation industries. Poor residents have become tour guides, some have taken part in the management of scenic spots, and some have opened hotels and farmhouses in the scenic areas, he added. In 2017, 959 households received 1.6 million yuan in dividends, which equates to 1,683 yuan per household.

30-year-old Zheng, a local resident, said that he left his village in 2004 when he was 16 and went to Guangdong Province. He started working in a furniture factory for just 400 yuan a month. Now he has established a family restaurant in his hometown and earns a monthly salary of 7000 yuan.

Liupanshui, located in the western Wumeng mountain area of Guizhou Province, has completed more than 10 key tourism zones, including six national 4A level tourism attractions and six provincial tourist resorts including Zangke River, Meihua Mountain, and more.

Due to its pleasant weather all year round, the city has been awarded the title of "the Cool City of China" by the China meteorological society for its cool and comfortable climate. It has more than 30 kinds of mineral resources such as, coal, iron, manganese, zinc and basalt.

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