The rapid development of e-commerce in the past decade has not only reshaped the consumption model of urban residents but also completely changed the business pattern of rural China.

Staff working in a store in a Taobao village in Guangxi. [Photo:]

According to the latest report issued by AliResearch, an institute under Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, China is now home to 4,310 “Taobao villages” – rural e-commerce hubs that each achieves annual e-commerce transactions of over 10 million yuan ($1.4 million), operates over 100 shops on Alibaba’s online shopping platform Taobao, and has 10 percent of households involved in e-commerce.

These Taobao villages are located in 25 Chinese municipalities, provinces and regions, 95.4 percent, or 4,113 of which are in coastal provinces including Zhejiang, Guangdong, Jiangsu, Shandong, Hebei, and Fujian.

They are distributed in 398 counties and districts which have a total population of over 250 million. They play an irreplaceable role in increasing the income of rural residents and helping migrant workers start businesses back in their home villages.

Thanks to e-commerce, many farmers have gradually shaken off poverty after they opened online shops.

The report said that the total transactions made by the shops in Taobao villages and townships exceeded 700 billion yuan last year, accounting for nearly half of all the rural transactions on Taobao and creating 6.8 million jobs.

The report estimated that the number of Taobao villages will exceed 20,000 in the next 10 years, and these villages will help create 20 million jobs and attract more youngsters to go back to their home villages to start businesses.


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