By Joseph S. Margai from Guizhou Province
Liu Guan Wen, Deputy General Manager and a one of the towers in the touristic site
The Deputy General Manager, Liupanshui Plum Blossom Mountain Ecological Cultural Tourism Development Co. Ltd., Liu Guan Wen has informed journalists that since the beginning of 2018, a total number of 800 tourists have visited the site, thereby generating a sum of 30 million Chinese Yuan, approximately US$4,393,050.
The cultural tourism site was developed by the Liupanshui Municipal Government through the support of the Communist Party of China (CPC) in order to create jobs for ethnic minorities in the localities and thereby alleviate poverty.
Liu Guan Wen, who was speaking over the weekend (Saturday 28th July 2018) to pressmen, also said the touristic site has the world's first longest cableway and there are many cable cars for tourists to ride and have fun.
He revealed that there are two ethnic minorities, Miao and Yi, living in the villages where the site is situated and all of them have been shareholders of the enterprise, adding that most of them are also employed as tour guide, security, drivers, cleaners, etc.
Asked how much amount of money was used to set up the site, the deputy general manager said the budgeted amount is 9.8 billion Chinese Yuan, approximately US$1,435,357,000.
Every enterprise has gotten its targeted annual income and in this regard, Liu Guan Wen, hastened to reveal that every year, their target is to generate 80 million Chinese Yuan and they have been realizing that figure.
However, he said since January this year, they have generated 30 million Chinese Yuan but hope to achieve their targeted amount by the end of 2018.
He said in summer, they used to get 4,000 and in winter they normal get about 1,000 tourists, noting that the prices for a whole family villa in the site costs 780 Chinese Yuan , approximately US$115, night and 98 Chinese Yuan, approximately US$15, to ride the cable car.
Long Caotang, a driver who is gainfully employed at the site, told this medium that he earns a monthly wage of 2,000 Chinese Yuan, approximately US$293, just to drive tourists around the site.
The driver, who has been working at the site for one year now, disclosed that the company has bought insurance for him.
As a father with one child, Long Caotang said that he was a taxi driver in Liupanshui city but prefers his current job than the previous one.
Another employee at the site, Huang Rongqin, whose job is to guide tourists, said she earns 4,000 Chinese Yuan, approximately US$586, monthly.
"I have worked here for two years now. As an indigene of one of the villages here, I am happy to be employed and working in my village rather than going far away. I have been also trained and awarded a tour guide certificate which means I am not only earning money but also something to show for my job," she gladly said.
Working in a male dominated company sometimes poses challenges for female but Huang Rongqin boastfully said she believes in her ability to deliver what she was employed to do, adding that confidence and brilliance have been the prime of her belief.
She reveal that she is happily married with one child and that her husband also works as an urban management officer in Liupanshui city but both of them see each other every day because it's 30 minutes' drive away from the village where she works.
A local tourist, Chen Yong, who came from Guiyang city with her family to visit the site, also told this medium that her money was wisely spent because she had enjoyed every bit of her trip to Liupanshui Plum Blossom Mountain Ecological Cultural Tourism site.
"The sceneries are beautiful, there is a fresh air and the prices of products here are not expensive," she said.
Quizzed where she sourced the information about the site, she said she knew about it from the radio, internet, and friends that had once visited and experienced the cable ride.
Wenqi Gao, a counselor in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, who led the team of local and foreign journalists to Guizhou province, when asked by this medium about his impression, said what Liupanshui Municipal Government is doing is in line with the central government's poverty alleviation strategies.
"I have realized that many lives have been positively transformed through the creation of jobs, economic expansion to poor people has been enhanced, good roads linking all the villages have been constructed, basic social amenities have been provided. These are all efforts brought by the CPC to alleviate poverty and improves people's living standards," he said.
Chen Yong (second right) and her family were at the Liupanshui Plum Blossom Mountain Ecological Cultural Tourism
African journalist (second right) interviewing a driver working for the tourism site
African journalist, writing for Concord Times Newspaper in Sierra Leone, experienced cable car ride on the world's first longest cableway