Opinion / Featured Contributors

Witnessing the rapid transformation of Guizhou

Updated: 2017-11-27 17:14 By Bruce Connolly (chinadaily.com.cn)

Witnessing the rapid transformation of Guizhou

Big Data Plaza Guiyang. [Photo by Bruce Connolly/chinadaily.com.cn]

Back in Guiyang, before departing for Beijing, we were introduced to the Big Data Exchange Center, which is at the heart of the city's rapid high-tech transformation. Indeed, along with eradicating rural poverty, this is one more massive factor in the turnaround of Guizhou. It is estimated around 1.2 million people in Guizhou were lifted out of poverty in 2016! Guizhou posted the third-fastest economic growth among China's 31 provinces in 2016, with Guiyang ranked as the best performing 2016 city by the Milken Institute. Guiyang hopes to attract big names to launch data centres within China's Big Data Valley. Chinese companies such as Alibaba and Tencent, along with multinationals such as Microsoft and Hyundai, have been drawn in. The relative affordability of areas such as Guiyang, a city regarded by residents as very livable, is appealing.

A fitting end to our visit was to have hotpot in a traditional Miao restaurant before heading out to the airport!

Guizhou, there are still considerable challenges in reducing rural poverty across the province, but willpower along with strong encouragement from President Xi is certainly there.

Guizhou, a truly fascinating place to visit. I will certainly return to Guizhou.