Female entrepreneur from south China’s Guangxi brings fortune to local villagers in previously impoverished community

(People's Daily Online) 16:46, July 14, 2022

Wang Yungui, a young woman of the Yao ethnic group from a mountainous village in south China’s Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, started her own businesses back in her hometown, bringing wealth to local residents living in the community.

Wang Yungui (R) promotes products via a live-streaming session in south China’s Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. (Photo courtesy of the interviewee)

Born in the 1990s in Liuduan village, Jinxiu Yao Autonomous County, Laibin city of Guangxi, Wang landed a decent job at the Nanjing Lukou International Airport in Nanjing, capital city of east China’s Jiangsu Province after graduating from Guangxi Normal University in Guilin city, a famous international tourist destination, in 2013.

Wang was soon overwhelmed by feelings of nostalgia. In 2014, she made a bold decision to quit her job and return home to start a business.

“I didn’t act on impulse. During my four-year college life in Guilin, I felt deeply that my hometown’s tourism resources boast broad prospects for development. My working experience in Nanjing made me recognize my potential. I can achieve my life’s potential only by starting my own business in my hometown,” Wang said.

With an altitude of more than 1,300 meters, Liuduan village, which serves as a home for the Yao ethnic group, is surrounded on three sides by mountains and was once severely impoverished, Wang recalled. Villagers had to walk for at least five hours to reach the county seat.

Photo shows Wang Yungui at her bottled water plant in south China’s Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. (Photo courtesy of the interviewee)

Wang, who studied e-commerce at university, came up with the idea of selling local specialties online, including tea leaves, bamboo shoots, and cured meat, among other items.

She applied for a loan of 50,000 yuan (about $7,441.9) to start her business selling local specialties online. “It took just a year to expand sales channels for villagers. Agricultural and sideline products from deep inside the mountains in my hometown enjoyed brisk sales online and were sold to the rest of the country,” Wang said, noting that this helped villagers increase their income severalfold.

The initial successes in online sales encouraged Wang to meanwhile tap into other resources in her hometown. In 2018, with the support of the local government, she started a culture and tourism development company to develop tourism featuring folk customs by taking full advantage of the culture of the Yao ethnic group, enabling more than 570 villagers to enjoy direct benefits from the tourism industry. In the same year, Liuduan village was lifted out of poverty.

One year later, Wang pursued plans to build a plant to produce bottled water. The plant’s annual sales volume exceeded 8 million yuan in 2021, which helped further boost villagers’ incomes.

Wang Yungui picks tea leaves with her daughter at a tea garden in south China’s Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. (Photo courtesy of the interviewee)

Wang said that the Guangdong-Guangxi pairing assistance program for poverty alleviation and rural vitalization has been of great help to her in the process of starting new businesses. “Now I sell bottled water and other agricultural and sideline products to Maoming city in Guangdong Province under the pairing assistance program,” the entrepreneur said.

In February 2021, she received a national award for her poverty alleviation efforts. “I’m so proud that the sound development of rural industries has improved farmers’ livelihood,” Wang said.

(Web editor: Hongyu, Bianji)


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