The Report on Digital Development in Rural China 2020, compiled by Expert Advisory Committee on Agricultural and Rural Informatization under the guidance of the Cyberspace Administration of China and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, was released on November 27th. The report gives a comprehensive summary of the policy initiatives, development process and milestone results achieved in building digital rural areas in China in 2020. It outlines the major developments and successful practices of different provinces and regions in this regard and provides a full picture of the development of digital villages in China in 2020.
According to the report, 2020 witnessed accelerated digital development and fruitful results across rural China with the further implementation of the Digital Rural Development Strategy. The Development Plan for Digital Agriculture and Rural Areas (2019-2025) was issued and a national pilot project on digital villages was executed. Information infrastructure has seen continuous improvement; the application of big data in agricultural and rural affairs is starting to yield positive results; digitalization in agriculture has been improved; digital economy and other new types of business in rural areas are flourishing; digital rural governance has been tremendously enhanced; information service in rural areas has been largely improved. Sound progress is being made in the development of smart and green villages; new momentum has been made in scientific and technological innovation in rural areas; notable outcomes have been produced in poverty alleviation through the use of internet.
The report emphasizes that efforts shall be made in accordance with the requirements of the 5th plenary session of the 19th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China to accelerate the development of smart agriculture and bolster deeper integrations between digital economy and rural development. A six-point proposal is presented. First, optimize the overall design and planning for developing a digital rural China during the 14th Five-Year Plan period (2021-2025). Second, expedite the installation of new-generation information infrastructure in rural areas. Third, foster new growth drivers for agriculture and rural development to unleash digital dividends. Fourth, explore innovative models should be explored at primary level to modernize rural governance. Fifth, promote integrated development of digital rural areas and smart cities. Sixth, stimulate endogenous capacities of rural areas to sustainably advance internet-empowered poverty alleviation and digital rural development.