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County heads promote local products in livestreams to battle poverty

Updated: Dec 12,2019 09:17 AM    CGTN

China continues working toward its goal of ending extreme poverty by the end of next year. But there are still millions struggling in the nation's remote areas. With the help of the internet and e-commerce, hundreds of county heads in poverty-stricken areas across China are using livestreaming to promote and sell their agricultural products online.

Many Miao ethnic people in China say they are talented in arts, crafts and agricultural products, but struggle to promote and sell them. Miao people have high quality agricultural products but very limited marketing channels, Yang Changxin, one of the villagers in Chengbu Miao autonomous county said.

Due to poor transportation, it is very difficult to sell many agricultural products from Chengbu. But after livestreaming for two months, these products have become very popular online, Liu Shujun, one of its deputy county heads, told CGTN.

Whether it's a local agricultural product or a Miao ethnic costume, these county heads are trying to promote and sell them online. They say livestreaming has become increasingly important in helping local farmers end poverty.

They are working with local farmers, enterprises and even key opinion leaders (KOL) to promote local agricultural products and distinctive cultures online. Generally these county heads handle the administrative work by day, while gearing up for the special livestreaming, which mostly happens at night.

Liu said that in the beginning, they had very few followers with small sales volume. But after two months, now they can sell around 10 thousand yuan of products each night.

Over 80 percent of the profits go to local farmers and enterprises, while the rest of it is used to keep the livestreaming operation running smoothly, Liu added. A growing number of county heads in poverty stricken areas have joined the livestreaming in the last few months.

Since April, over 300 county heads across China have joined their livestreaming platforms, Zhu Xi, senior manager of Taobao Live-streaming, Alibaba Group, told CGTN. They have made special shows for them every day.

Liu says they are doing this livestreaming for free, in the hopes that they can set a good example for local people. The ultimate goal is to help more Miao people use the internet to promote their products and cultures and attract more tourists from both at home and abroad.