Tourism Improves Living Standard in Gan Za


…generates annual income of ¥130m

April 12, 2018 By Joseph S. Margai in Sanya, Hainan Province

A section of the National Li and Miao Ethnic Minority Cultural Park in Gan Za village in China

Gan Za village, a place occupied by both the Li and Miao ethnic minority in the People’s Republic of China, has been boosted by tourism as the annual income generation from the many artifacts in the site is one hundred and thirty million Chinese Yuan (¥130m).

Already, the National Li and Miao Ethnic Minority Cultural Park, dubbed the mysterious village hidden in the rainforest, has been ranked the top ten filming location in China.

Artifacts depicting the rich culture and tradition of the two ethnic minority groups in China would convince anyone enough to visit the place that has been ranked as the National 5A Level Tourist Attraction site in China, at all times.

Ji Gui, General Manager of the park in Gan Za village, told journalists that it was established 20 years ago, adding that they spent 500 million Yuan to set up the touristic park.

He revealed that the park attracted over 1.3 million tourists last year, noting that since the beginning of this year the park has already attracted some 1.6 million visitors.

Ji said among the number of tourists that are visiting the park only 200 are foreigners and the rest are Chinese.

The park, which has been named the National Intangible Cultural Heritage Protection Site in China, according to Ji Gui, has employed 1,300 workers from the village of Gan Za.

“This tourist attraction center has improved the standard of living for all the workers in this village. The exciting thing is that we have employed the aged, amongst them is an 80-year-old women, who weaves clothes for tourists. If all the aged weave lot of clothes and decide to sell them, the proceeds would go to them and not to the company,” he explained and added that they provide transport and accommodation for all their workers.

He said their income is generated mainly from sale of tickets and the items they manufacture and sell in the touristic park.

As a private investment in the village and despite having support of the Chinese government, Ji Gui said they pay taxes to government and employ villages who have now experienced tremendous improvement in their lives, as a means of giving back to society.

“During winter holidays, we always invite the children to come here and learn about their culture,” he said.

He said the Chinese government has already taken significant steps to prevent deforestation and promote ecosystem, noting that because of that, all the timber and wooden facilities in the park are being imported from Vietnam.

“The government has disallowed us from cutting down trees for timber logging which is needed to beautify this place. The government is taking the lead in protecting the environment and all of us want a better environment so we accepted the decision of government,” he explained.

All the workers that spoke to this medium confirmed that they have now experienced improved standard of living in a village that is predominantly occupied by rural farmers.

General Manager Ji Gui says standard of living has improved in the village