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Rural tourism helps Chinese villages embrace prosperity
update:December 24,2020
BEIJING, Dec.24,2020 -- Rural tourism in China is becoming an increasingly important industry in the country's fight against poverty, an official from the Ministry of Culture and Tourism said Wednesday.
The central budget invested 6.5 billion yuan (around 991 million U.S. dollars) in 656 infrastructure projects to boost rural tourism in poor areas in recent years, said Shan Gangxin, an official with the ministry's resource development department.
The ministry has also been deepening cooperation with banks over financial assistance to the industry, with the banks issuing nearly 70 billion yuan in loans, Shan added.
Amid efforts to promote the industry's development, the government has announced a list of 1,000 key villages with prosperous rural tourism, with 225 of them being poverty-stricken, Shan said, noting that the move has helped the poor villages nurture a number of quality rural tourism brands.
"A total of 300 new tourism routes have also been launched this year," Shan added.
Moreover, the government has set up five training centers for fighting poverty by developing rural tourism and trained more than 8,000 people.
Due to COVID-19, such training has gone online in 2020. More than 650,000 people have taken the online courses so far, figures from the ministry show. 
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