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Premier inspires village transformation

Updated: Mar 3,2015 6:49 PM     english.gov.cn

Premier Li Keqiang discusses village issues with residents of the village of Taipingzhuang, Ongniud Banner of the Inner Mongolia autonomous region, on March 27, 2014.[Photo by Huang Jingwen/Xinhua]

SPECIAL COVERAGE: TALKING TO PEOPLE THE PREMIER VISITED IN 2014

Zhang Jianmin, vice-secretary of the Party committee of Ongniud Banner in the Inner Mongolia autonomous region, is eager to tell Premier Li Keqiang about the tremendous changes in the village of Taipingzhuang since the Premier’s visit last year.

Premier Li Keqiang discusses village issues with residents of the village of Taipingzhuang, Ongniud Banner of the Inner Mongolia autonomous region, on March 27, 2014.[Photo by Huang Jingwen/Xinhua]

Premier Li visited the remote village in Chifeng city - a state-level poor county with underdeveloped roads, farmland irrigation system, water supply and inadequate access to electricity - on March 27, 2014.

He attended a meeting on village issues with a dozen residents.

It was the first time that villager Zhu Yunsheng and other residents had the opportunity to talk with the Premier about issues affecting their village.

The participants calmly - but clearly - expressed their opinions, and also told the Premier about their requirements.

Village secretary raised issues such as the lack of roads and the unavailability of safe drinking water.

Additionally, the director of the village’s women’s federation said that women do not have the necessary skills to do farm work when the men are out working, and they do not have the funds to do large-scale farming.

Another villager complained that they cannot afford advanced agricultural equipment.

Premier Li Keqiang discusses village issues with residents of the village of Taipingzhuang, Ongniud Banner of the Inner Mongolia autonomous region, on March 27, 2014.[Photo by Huang Jingwen/Xinhua]

Premier Li concluded their discussion, saying that the focus should be on the lack of roads, safe water, electricity and adequate health services, and they should also focus on the need to safeguard the environment and improve the quality of the local labor force.

The Premier said that though the concerns of the residents involve issues related to their village- these issues are related to China’s governance and are common in rural areas, especially in the north.

The Premier also reached a preliminary agreement with officials who accompanied him during his tour, deciding that the new funds concerning basic public health services for the grassroots in 2014 will give priority to subsidizing village doctors.

And, six months after the Premier’s visit -residents of Taipingzhuang were able to enjoy wide asphalt roads and a power grid that meets requirements for farmland irrigation. Additionally, the authorities have solved the problems concerning agricultural water conservation.

Zhu recently said: “We wrote a letter to the Premier in August to tell him about this, and we received his reply in September”.

Premier Li wrote in his letter that he was happy to hear about the achievements, which demonstrated the effectiveness of concerted efforts of the government and the villagers.

He asked the villagers to learn from their experience and explore more ways to improve their livelihood - and also to boost prosperity in surrounding villages.

Zhu said he is very satisfied with the policies carried out by the State Council last year.

Villagers received agricultural subsidies in a timely manner, and the time required to process administrative approvals, such as applications for property ownership certificates, has been greatly reduced.

Zhang, the party vice-secretary, is now working with the villagers to realize the goal of eradicating poverty by the end of 2016 - and aims to be the first banner in the east of the region to do so.

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