Women Shake Off Poverty with E-Commerce in NW China

April 26, 2016
By Dang BaifengEditor: Eileen Cheng

Wugong, a county in northwest China's Shaanxi Province, has received attention as a State-level poverty-stricken region. Now, it is witnessing a growing number of local women who have embraced e-commerce and are making a living whilst remaining in their hometowns.

Local women make up the vast majority of the over 8,000 people employed by some 1,800 online store owners, earning an average of 2,500 yuan (U.S. $385) per month.

Cui Yan, a woman who quit her job in the provincial capital for the sake of her children and seniors, has been running a store on the e-commerce platform Taobao, selling local specialties. Now daily transactions of her store exceed 30 in number, with the total value topping 3,000 yuan (U.S. $462).

Zhang Lei, a female university graduate who started her own e-commerce business two years ago, has been selling fresh food, including fruit, with an annual income of tens of thousands of U.S. dollars. As her company continues to prosper, she has hired three college students.

"It's quite challenging to start your own business; university students involved can feel a greater sense of achievement," she said.

To help more rural women find employment in their local community, the Wugong government launched an e-commerce drive in later 2013, investing 4 million yuan (U.S. $616,000) in providing free working sites, training sessions and other business services. The sales value of the county amounted to 1.05 billion yuan (U.S. $162 million) in 2015.

In addition, there are currently over 10,000 local women engaged in traditional patchwork and embroidery handicrafts, forging new areas of growth for its e-commerce campaign.

(Source: China Women's News/Translated and edited by Women of China)

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