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Collective enterprise helps villagers shake off poverty in Chongqing

Xinhua,October 19, 2020 Adjust font size:

Villager Ma Peiqing (C) poses for a photo with her youngest son Chen Peng (R) and daughter-in-law Tan Minglan at their home in Huaxi Village of Zhongyi Township, Shizhu Tujia Autonomous County, southwest China's Chongqing Municipality, April 8, 2020. Zhongyi Township in Chongqing had a high incidence of poverty due to poor soil quality and inconvenient transportation in a mountainous terrain. Before 2018, more than 60 percent of labor force in Huaxi Village went out to other cities to earn a living, which left nearly 60 percent of the farmland uncultivated. But poverty relief efforts began to bring about changes to Huaxi in 2018. To help villagers shake off poverty, officials taking charge of poverty alleviation work made a detailed survey on the local geological condition. The finding shows that the local soil and weather are more suitable to grow high-yield economic plants such as sealwort, a kind of traditional Chinese herb, than just corn and potatoes. Having persuaded villagers to rent out their farmland to a collective enterprise, poverty-alleviation officials not only introduced planting knowledge and skills but also hired the villagers to plant and manage the fields. Meanwhile, villagers are encouraged to invest to have a stake in the enterprise. By 2020, about 17 hectares of peach, 21 hectares of papaya and 45 hectares of sealwort have been planted on farmland contracted by villagers. These efforts on the one hand make the villagers have a stable income from land rentals and on the other hand spur them to make money by working hard in the field. At the year's end, the villagers even have the chance to get dividends from the enterprise. Better living condition in the village and promising future have attracted villagers who were working in other places to come back. In 2019 alone, 26 people returned to Huaxi and have started their own businesses. (Xinhua/Liu Chan)

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