Rural areas reap benefits of vitalization (2)

(China Daily) 10:42, July 08, 2022

New houses stand in Zikeng village, Bai'e township, Huichang, Jiangxi province. ZHU HAIPENG/FOR CHINA DAILY

Li Jiuchangsheng, a manager at the base, said it is home to 19 pollution-free, labor-intensive enterprises involved in making clothing, shoes, hats and electronic products. It employs more than 1,500 workers, and an additional 500 or so employees are engaged in auxiliary production work at home.

"Many residents used to find work elsewhere because there was no industry in their hometown, but as their living costs were high, they saved very little each year," Li said.

He added that due to a shortage of young people locally, there were problems with children's education and support for the elderly. The industrial base has solved such difficulties to a large extent and promoted the economic development of towns and villages.

Since the base began to operate, it has effectively promoted the collective economic development of local villages. Each village in the township receives 130,000 yuan each year for managing the base, Li said.

In November 2020, the Huichang county government announced a plan to expand the base. The second phase, which is under construction, will host about 40 labor-intensive small and medium-sized enterprises from neighboring towns and villages, providing employment for 5,000 people.

In addition to establishing labor-intensive industries, Huichang has made full use of its rich mineral resources to build chemical industry clusters during the past decade. It now plays an important role in manufacturing lithium batteries, in tandem with the rise of the new energy industry.

According to the county government, proven local fluorite mineral resources have reached 2.63 million metric tons, and rock salt mineral reserves amount to 1.9 billion tons, making Huichang the only area of China to boast rock salt and fluorite ores-offering advantages for the development of fluorite-and salt-related industries.

Fluorite, an important industrial mineral composed of calcium and fluorine, is used in a wide variety of chemical, metallurgical and ceramic processes.

Yang Fubin, president of Shilei Group, a fluorine company at the fluorite-salt new materials base, said salt is a daily necessity and one of the basic raw materials for chemical industries.

"In today's fierce market competition, enterprises must enter this industry at the top level, and to survive, they must be irreplaceable. As a practitioner and promoter of the development of the fluorine and new salt material industry in Huichang, I am pleased to see we have changed from exporting and selling our own mineral resources to importing fluorite mineral resources and exporting high-value-added products."


(Web editor: Liang Jun, Bianji)