Zhejiang province is leading the way in the construction of digital villages and the development of digital agriculture and rural areas. The China Digital Rural Development Report (2022), jointly compiled by the Cyberspace Administration of China and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, shows that Zhejiang has maintained its position at the forefront of the country, with a development level of 68.3 percent, ranking first for four consecutive years.
The province’s investment in agricultural technology has played a significant role in the development of digital villages. However, the industry is more than just about applying new technology. Villagers’ lives are central pillars of rural vitalization and the digital village’s development. The local government has made efforts towards digital healthcare and digital education in villages, which include the establishment of smart living centers, where villagers can conduct health self-tests, remote consultations with doctors, and consult on agricultural technology, policies, and regulations online.
Zhejiang is home to China’s leading e-commerce and internet companies such as Alibaba and is one of the most vibrant places for digital trade and the digital economy. To seize the opportunities presented by digital technologies, farmers are encouraged to actively develop smart agriculture by learning the new generation of information technology. The government will cooperate with universities to provide farmers with necessary digital information, know-how, and knowledge, said Xu Qing, deputy director of the Internet Information Office of the Zhejiang Provincial Party Committee, during a press conference.
Furthermore, Zhejiang is committed to promoting coordinated and sustainable cultural development in rural areas by constructing more cultural and creative bases, developing homestays and farmhouses, and promoting the integration between agriculture, culture, tourism, and sports. These measures not only promote the national rural vitalization strategy but also stimulate traditional cultural preservation and boost the vitality of the cultural industry, thus increasing the incomes of local villagers and promoting common prosperity.
The province’s commitment to digitalization will greatly shape the direction of the rural agricultural industry over the next few years. With its efforts in digital village construction, digital agriculture, and cultural development, Zhejiang has demonstrated that it is already well on its way towards achieving these goals.