Economy and Trade

Rural vitalization boosted by Taiwan compatriots

Updated: Oct 21, 2022 By ZHAO YIMENG China Daily Print
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Children experience agricultural work in July at a farm opened in 2019 by Kuo Dian-i (left) in Kunshan, Suzhou, Jiangsu province. [Photo/CHINA DAILY]

More Taiwan compatriots and enterprises have been devoted to rural vitalization on the Chinese mainland under supportive policies, delegates from Taiwan said in Beijing on the sidelines of the ongoing 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China.

Young compatriots learned from the experience of Taiwan's modern agriculture and rural construction and applied this knowledge to the development of agriculture and beautiful countrysides on the mainland, they said.

Jiang Erxiong, president of the Fujian Federation of Taiwan Compatriots and a delegate to the congress, said that more than 300 people from Taiwan have participated in rural construction in Fujian province, injecting new vitality into the countryside.

Among those participating is Chang Sin-yee, a graduate student from Fu Jen Catholic University in Taiwan who majored in landscape architecture. Chang came to Sanming, Fujian, from Tainan in 2014 and worked on rural landscape design.

Chang and her team launched a rural construction project in Jixi, a village in Sanming, which combined the unique local Danxia landscape features — predominantly red or orange sandstone rock formations — and cave culture. The old village dwellings have been renovated into scattered homestays. They also designed museums showing cross-Straits culture, as well as research bases and lacquer workshops, in the village.

"The beautiful scenery and preferential policies in Sanming have provided us with a stage to show our talent," Chang said.

The 12-member team has been to more than 100 villages in the province and finished 20 design projects.

Qiu Feng, vice-president of the Suzhou Federation of Taiwan Compatriots in Jiangsu province and also a delegate to the congress, said that many people in Taiwan are involved in local agriculture and rural vitalization.

Among them is Kuo Dian-i, who opened a farm in Kunshan, Suzhou, in 2019 that grows around 20 types of organic fruits and vegetables. "Natural farming and planting methods are used on the farmland, without using chemical pesticides or fertilizers," Kuo said.

Apart from regular fruit-picking activities, many family events featuring nature education and art performances are held on the 8 hectares of land.

Kuo brought his knowledge of agricultural practices in Taiwan, which focuses on intensive cultivation, and put it into practice in Kunshan.

He plans to introduce aquaculture experts and techniques from Taiwan and build a breeding base in Jinxi township to develop a new industry. "More local farmers will receive technical training and benefit from the industry," he said.

The Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council released "22 Measures on Agriculture and Forestry" last year to further support the development of Taiwan-funded enterprises in agriculture and forestry on the Chinese mainland.

Chan Chieh-Yuan, executive director of Taili International Group Sichuan Agriculture Co, said it is significant that the market on the mainland will be expanded for agricultural enterprises and that Taiwan compatriots will be given equal treatment on the mainland.

The company, now based in the village of Zhanqi in Chengdu, Sichuan province, is an incubator of enterprises related to agricultural technology and also has a test field for crop varieties introduced from Taiwan, such as red pears.

The company also introduced orchid varieties from Taiwan that were planted in a high-tech greenhouse.

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