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People's Daily Online>>China Society

Farmers celebrate in new houses

By Ma Lie (China Daily)

10:21, February 01, 2012

Liu Jiashui (left) and his son decorate their new house recently in Qiyan village, Ankang, Northwest China's Shaanxi province. Liu's old house at Xinpu village collapsed in a flood in 2010. In July, the family of six moved into their new home built by local government for disaster-hit families. Liu Xiao / Xinhua

XI'AN - China's largest relocation project yet has been progressing smoothly and the first Shaanxi province farmers to be moved celebrated Spring Festival in their new homes.

Zhang Yajun, a farmer who used to live in the isolated mountains of Ziyang county, in the southern part of the province, celebrated Chinese New Year in his new two-story house.

"It was the most wonderful thing for my family of five to watch a TV show from beginning to end on New Year's Eve in our new house. When we lived in the mountains, TV was unclear and reception would fall out because our old house didn't have a proper power supply or TV cable," Zhang said.

And the family won't have to worry about the natural disasters such as floods and landslides that they experienced at their former home in the Qinba Mountains.

Zhou Dachun, a farmer from the mountainous village of Zhushan who was relocated with Zhang to Xinpu in a plain near the city Ankang, said he was thrilled that the relocation gave him the chance to have a good home and ways to make money.

"The new 120-sq-m house for my family of six costs at least 110,000 yuan ($17,000). I would have had to work for about 10 years as a migrant worker to save the money to build such a house. But the provincial and city governments have paid more than 40,000 yuan, and I only need to pay about 70,000 yuan," he said.

Zhou said he got a home loan at a low interest rate from a local bank and he was confident he could pay it off within three years.

"The relocation gave us more ways to make money, because the conditions are better for doing business where we live now. I've opened a small restaurant and earn much more than I did as migrant worker," he said.

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