China / Regions

Gansu develops rural e-commerce

By Li Xiaoxu ( Updated: 2015-04-24 16:36

Wudu district in northwest China's Gansu province opened its first Taobao service center on April 18. It is also the first county level Taobao service center to open in the western rural area.

Ten village service centers also began operations on the same day.

Wudu district government and online Internet giant Alibaba jointly established the Taobao Wuwei service center with the intention of developing rural e-commerce businesses in the area.

The Wuwei e-commerce operation center will deal with the construction of Taobao rural projects and village service network stations, handle logistics, training institutes and inspection agencies to help agricultural products enter the city market.

Ten newly opened village centers will help farmers open online stores and buy quality and reasonably priced goods through the Internet.

Wudu district, located in Gansu's Longnan city, is well-known for its abundance of pollution-free agricultural products.

It was named the "home of Chinese prickly ash" by the State Forestry Administration in 2000 and was honored as the "home of olive" by the Chinese Economic Forest Association. The area is also suited to growing high quality Radix Hedysari (Hongqi in Chinese) a Chinese herb used in traditional Chinese medicine. Radix Hedysari is often added as an ingredient in prescriptions for the high blood pressure and diseases related to nerve injury.

The Chinese online marketplace conglomerate, Alibaba Group, launched a project in October 2014 to offer e-commerce services in rural areas. It is expected to invest 10 billion yuan ($1.6 billion) in building 1,000 county e-commerce business service centers and 100,000 village centers in three to five years. Wudu district is one of the pilot counties of the project.

According to Zhou Guodong, the deputy general manager of the Alibaba northern rural area business division, Alibaba is seeking to build a rural electronic commerce service system and the company is exploiting the market in western China with the hope of enabling villagers to access online shopping and develop a greater penetration of e-commerce in rural areas.

The government in Wudu district has strengthened its efforts to promote e-commerce businesses in recent years. So far, the district has around 1,155 online stores, making 169 million yuan of annual sales. The e-commerce system already covers more than 36 towns and 650 villages.

Wudu government has also signed rural electricity business cooperation agreements with Alibaba Group at the event.

Edited by Jacob Hooson



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