Sci-tech shows promise in China's fight against poverty
By Wang Mengjie
From theory to practice, from service personnel to tech support, the town of Longju in southwest China's Chongqing Municipality has developed an array of anti-poverty industries with the help of science and technology.
"Technical service personnel have offered their sci-tech expertise to our villagers, which has helped with their poultry farming industry, putting minds at rest," said Bai Xinliang, head of Wutong Village in Longju.
Like those in Longju, experts from across China are helping with technology-driven poverty reduction programs. But how have these individuals become a key in the anti-poverty battle?
"Since the 18th CPC National Congress in 2012, there have been 289,800 rural technical service personnel working at the forefront of the battle against poverty, providing technical and entrepreneurship services for nearly 100,000 villages on the poverty list nationwide," Xu Nanping, a vice minister of the Ministry of Science and Technology said on Wednesday.
Besides these experts, sci-tech projects delivering tangible benefits have also been developed to help alleviate poverty.
"We have launched over 250 projects with the support of the National Key R&D Program, investing a total of 219 million yuan (about $33.5 million) and attracting an extra 845 million yuan from other sources,” Xu said, adding that nearly 200 new crop varieties have been bred and over 100 key industrial technologies developed, which is a strong boost to industrial development in paired-up counties.
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Time magazine has named 2020 the worst year ever, but experts believe China's achievements in poverty reduction are a glimmer of hope in this troubling year.